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Tuesday, July 5, 2011


One of My Little Secrets, by Stephanie Rowe

The question that LASR asked me to blog about was "If I were a fly on your wall during a writing day, what would I see?"

What you see might surprise you, and hopefully, it might inspire you. Yes, you would sit me at the computer, writing, brainstorming, day dreaming. You'd hear music playing on my computer. You'd see my cat snoozing beside me. You'd see my exercise bike in the corner that I jump on when I'm feeling burned out or frustrated. But that's all window dressing. To see what is really worth seeing, you might have to look a little harder.

See, I believe that writing, the best writing, can come only from the soul. To make that happen, I've learned I need to get myself in a positive frame of mind while I write. I need to listen to what my soul needs, and then respond.

For example, I have a beautiful desk in my bedroom that was my grandfather's for seventy years (he lived until he was 94). I still have memories of him sitting at that old desk working, and I can practically feel his presence at the desk when I look over at night. It's very powerful for me, and I love working there... but there are days when it's not right. There are days when I want to bask in the sunshine and the wide open space of the living room, and then I camp out on the couch with a fuzzy blanket. I've been on the couch for the last six months, and it's where I need to be. At first I felt a little guilty, not using my grandfather's desk, but I've learned that I need to listen to that voice inside me, honor it, and follow it. So, the couch has become mine. :-)

Across from the couch, I have the living room wall covered with 8 ½ x 11 sheets of paper filled with inspirational quotes. I used to buy cards that had inspirational quotes on them, but then I realized that what inspires me changes from day to day. Instead of continuing to buy cards that might become obsolete, I keep a stack of paper and a purple marker and Scotch table on the dining room table. Everything I have a thought that fires me up, I write it in big letters and tape it up. So, when I sit down on the couch, and my mind starts to wander, I look up, and I see words that matter to me, words that encourage me to dig deep, words that make me believe in myself. Seeing those words help move me forward to that next step.

Today's words are: "I believe in myself. I can do anything. I really can."

Still up there from other days are: "Worry doesn't actually accomplish anything. It's okay to let go of worry." And "This is my path. I don't need to justify it to anyone." They help me, and they are beautiful. Find your words, put them up where you will walk by them every day, and then put new ones up each time you have a thought that feels good. I find that switching out the signs and putting new ones up makes me notice them, and when I notice them, I feel my entire body relax or get energized in response.

The greatest stories come from within, and I am, after a decade of writing, finally at that place where I am letting that happen, and it is changing the stories that I'm writing, and it's beautiful. I would love to hear what others do for inspiration. What quote or thought gave you a pick-me-up this morning? What do you do that reaches inside you and helps you find that inner strength, that flash of joy, that power to take get yourself to take one more step toward your goal?

Comments on this blog will be entered into a drawing for 2 copies of Touch if You Dare. 2 winners, US and Canada only.


Leanne109 said...

I have a big important day tomorrow and I'm super nervous, Your words for the day truly touched me :D Thx!


Stephanie Rowe said...

Oh, good! I'm so happy Leanne! Good luck!!

Elena Gray said...

I tend to do most of my writing on the couch too. My ideas come to me when I'm the most relaxed. In the shower, or driving in the car. I always carry a notepad with me, because I never know when I'll need it. It also helps to have a good support system to cheer you on when you're not feeling motivated.


bookworm54 said...

//hi/1 When I'm upset or am overwhelm I listen to christian music so I can get an myself in a better mood and let God handle my problems and troubles.

cheesecake.thief59 said...

I should probably copy you and write out quotes to help inspire my writing because what I do now is either listen to the doubt that crowds my mind or I get my sister to encourage me (though she sometimes gets annoyed with my doubts). Sometimes my muses overpower the doubts, but that doesn't happen as often.

Also, I just want to say that I absolutely LOVE everything you've ever written and is there ever going to be a book about Satan and Iris??? They totally deserve their own book (or at least a real ending!).


Lolarific said...

My husband usually is the thought or literal push I need to make it through a goal. He's my biggest supporter and believes in me no matter what I may have to say about myself. If I find myself staring at the ceiling going "what do I do now???" I will tell him my issues/problems and he will say "I believe in you honey. You can do this. Just take a deep breath and get back in there and finish." That is all it takes to motivate me. His faith in me is amazing and if someone else has that much faith in me so should I. Therefore I re-establish my backbone and tackle my goal.

Lolarific said...

Forgot my email. Silly me.


Stephanie Rowe said...

Hi Elena! I totally agree that the best ideas come when you're relaxed. Forcing it just seems to create a block!

Bookworm54, that is a great idea, too. Music can be so powerful for the soul.

Cheesecake Thief! Wow! Thank you so much for the nice words about my writing. I adore Iris and Satan, and I would love to write that story if I get the chance. Hopefully, I can get my publisher to agree! And I hear you on the power of doubt. Doubt can be so debilitating, and it can be so tough to bury. That's great you have your sister to help you, though.

Lolarific, that is beautiful. He sounds wonderful. I think I'm going to print your comment and put that quote on my wall. It would work for me, too!

Lolarific said...

He is wonderful. He's been my best friend since we met. There's nothing I can't share with him. I'm a very lucky woman!

Stephanie Rowe said...

You certainly all, Lorarific! Hold tight to him!

Lolarific said...

Oh I plan on it! :D

Sarah said...

Loved your message. So needed to hear that right now. Juggling a 3 yr old as an older mom and trying to still like my "career" that I use to love is a big struggle for me at this juncture. I havent been reading many blogs lately due to time and energy. Thank goodness (or LASR for contests) I opened this one tonight on a whim. I have a great friend and coworker who is always inspirational for me. So when I have doubt, no matter how small or big I know she will stop and listen to me. She may or may not have advice. The most important thing is I know someone is there if I really need them.

AND I agree with Cheesecake thief on Satan and Iris. Do we need to send love notes to your publisher? Keep up the good work.

Stephanie Rowe said...

Hi Sarah! I'm a single mom of a five year old, so I totally understand the struggles you're facing. Some days are just TOUGH. That is great you have a good friend who supports you. We all need someone like that in our lives.

And yes, love notes to the publisher! I'm dying to write Iris and Satan's story!