Tuesday, 14 June 2011


Todays post is part of a blog hop created on a writers group I use on Facebook. You can find the details and the link on Gladiators Pen.

It's a monthly blog hop, on the second Tuesday, where a different topic is suggested each month and participants can write a post, however they see fit, on that particular subject. This months subject is inspiration.

So, what do I have to say about inspiration? I suppose it is something that is personal to all of us. We as people, tend to be pretty different to each other and we work in completely different ways.

We learn in different ways and this is shown by the Flemings VAK/VARK model which suggests there are four ways of learning;

  1. Visual Learners who prefer to see images and diagrams
  2. Auditory learners, who prefer to be told how to do something 
  3. Read/Write learners who does what it says on the tin and,
  4. Kinesthetic /Tactile learners who need to learn hands on. 
For me, I feel that these two things can be linked learning and inspiration. 

I for instance am a visual and auditory learner so I find my inspiration tends to come from watching people and situations, and listening to the interactions. Seeing how people genuinely interact with each other and not how we expect them to act. 

For example in a crime scenario, how you expect someone to act, isn't usually the way you are going to get it. Humans are unique and you need to remember this when writing. 

There is a very good video clip out there in the World wide web somewhere of a couple of police officers interrogating a victim of rape and because she wasn't crying and getting upset as they expected, they really grilled her and called her a liar. Now this was many many many years ago and things have changed drastically since them, but it's a good example of how people don't do what you think they might. So whatever your learning style, employ it for inspiration. 

Look at people if you are visual, interact with them if you are kinethsetic, listen to them if you are auditory. But you're writing about people and if you want real in your writing, then employ your learning style to get that realism and find out who people really are for your inspiration. Use what you have to your advantage and all that; watching, listening and interacting will bring you some real life characters you can work with.


  1. Great post, I'm definitely a Visual learner and a
    Kinesthetic /Tactile learner as well.

    I'm one of those who never reads the instructions and tries to figure stuff out, even though I know reading could save me a bit of time...oh, maybe that's just an impatient learning style!


  2. I have to read (and write notes) and then do, so I guess that makes me 3/4.

    And you're right, the only thing you can expect people to do is the unexpected :)

  3. I am definitely a visual and kinesthetic learner. So true that everyone has different learning patterns and therefore different behaviour patterns.
    Great angle on inspiration...definitely gives one food for thought.

  4. Thanks for this - it's really interesting :)

  5. Eden - Thank you. I hate trying to read instructions, but would end up with an upside down table if I didn't!

    Sarah - you're right. It's rare that people just act as you think they should, so as writers we need to understand that. It's a good reminder post for myself this one. :)

    Kim - Thank you. I'm not sure where the idea came from, I was up late and it was one of those things that just came into my head. It then flowed quite nicely. Thanks for stopping by.

    Clare - I'm glad you enjoyed it.

  6. Very interesting - I think I am everything except 2 -I hate being told what to do!- I learn quite well from pictures and diagrams and certainly books are where I head first if I want to learn something new - so a mixture of them all

  7. Good post. Although I'm quite visual, I'm definitely an audio/tactile learner. Tell me how to do something and let me get my hands going at the same time and I'm much more likely to understand/learn/remember it. Being dyslexic this was something my mom figured out on her own. Like when it came to spelling, if she spelled a word out loud to me and I said it out loud and wrote it down at the same time I was much more likely to remember how to spell it later on.

    Which leads to visual...I can often tell when a word doesn't *look* right, which is a good signal for me to look it up.

  8. Interesting idea. I'm a tactile learner. If someone tells me how to do something, it's alarmingly likely to go in one ear and out the other. But if they walk me through it hands-on, that I'll remember!

  9. Alberta - I'm with you there. I really hate being told what to do! :)

    Bish - I think a lot of people mix the learning styles. It's about what works best for you. It obviously worked well for you with dyslexia. I hope it's something teachers do consider when teaching kids that have difficulties with the way they are being taught.

    Ranae - Absolutely. I can't just be told. If someone is telling me directions, I just look at them with a blank look on my face and I get very frustrated. Give me a drawn map or even better a sat nav, I can get anywhere!

  10. Great post! I'm very visual and tactile myself. I find things that fill my senses inspire me the most. :)

  11. Rebecca, this is awesome! I usually go about examining inspiration from a creative POV but the analytical way is very interesting...

  12. Great take on Inspiration! I would have to say I learn with a combination of all four types. I can't learn different things the same way. Every learning experience I have is different and requires different ways of learning.
    Thanks for a great post! It was definately "inspiring"!

  13. I like to have a combination of all learning methods to learn best. It's kind of like opening up all of the senses to make written scenes come to life.

    Tossing It Out

  14. Elise - Thank you. That seems to be the common response through out with the creative types on here doesn't it.

    Patti - Thank you. I'm not sure where the idea sprang from. I wrote it late, in the middle of the night (UK time) and it was just there. Sometimes we just have to let these things flow don't we :)

    Katie - I'm glad you liked it. That's quite a good point. I suppose it does depend on what it is we are actually trying to learn.

    Arlee - A good point. Sometimes I don't think we use all the sense enough. I know I can be taken back to a place in time, in an instant with a smell. It's about knowing these things about people and the more we know, the more real our characters can become.

  15. Fascinating post. I'd say I'm a mixture of number one and four. Visual prompts are great for inspiring me, and I definitely learn new things through doing them.

    Great post!

    Ellie Garratt

  16. Thanks Ellie - It's all about the way in which we take the world in isn't it and we're all individual. It's what makes us a never ending supply of inspiration for books :)

  17. I like how you make it so scientific and analytical.
    i think I get more of my inspiration via reading.

  18. Ruchiaraa - I also love to read and have recently broadened my reading horizons.