Travel As Inspiration


Um…so I haven’t been the best at taking my own advice as my last post was a month ago. Not that this is an excuse – because nothing is – but I was lucky enough to take a much-needed vacation away from this never-ending winter.  Thanks to copious amounts of Vitamin D and blissful ocean breezes, I returned feeling not only physically refreshed but also creatively inspired.

Best vacation pastime – watching my two fave people building sandcastles…

As writers we’re told not to sit around waiting for inspiration. This is great advice and something I need to remind myself of often. However there are times when my little muse buzzes in my ear a bit more loudly than others. These moments usually take place while swinging in a hammock, running my fingers through soft sand under swaying palms or swimming in turquoise ocean waters (can you tell we like beach vacations?). Travel inspires me. Or maybe it just allows me to relax enough to hear the whispers of creativity that can sometimes be drowned out by our constant frenetic world.

Setting in particular is a point of inspiration for me. I’ve come to realize that rather than a character or a situation, I often get my ideas and concepts from places. My first (finished 😉 ) book takes place in Panama, a beautiful country where my husband and I spent our paternity leave with our daughter. We spent a lot of time up in the mountains in a picturesque little village called El Valle, located in the crater of an extinct volcano. Many of Jess’s adventures take place here and at the conservation center that houses the Golden Frog, Panama’s almost extinct national icon, and one of the stars of Kissing Frogs.

On this recent trip to the Mayan Riviera, I was able to turn off electronics, work and other daily distractions that can sometimes sop up those creative juices, leaving little on the plate. I was lucky enough to come home with only a mild sunburn and a nugget of an idea for my next book. Now to set to work on polishing it up.

What about you? What inspires you to create?

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