Guest Writers

On finding inspiration in the sun


Suppose that you have just applied for a journalism internship with a well-established, online literary magazine with dozens of well-versed authors from around the country. Suppose that one of the authors from that same organization contacts you the following day asking that you visit the site and provide an article that you feel meshes with the theme and vibe of the magazine.


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Then, suppose that you have rushed to a silent room, opened Microsoft Word and began scouring your brain for that flawless 500-word article you know is just sitting in your head like an old mother in a rocking chair-waiting to tell a story. And you get nothing.

Read: Quick write: Be inspired by winter’s stark landscape

Inspiration to a writer is like water to a wishing well. Without it, the well seems empty and meaningless. However, when inspiration pours into the mind of a writer–much like water into a wishing well- they become full of life, hope, and sometimes even a few extra pennies here and there. But how does one come across such a well-concealed necessity?

Often times, it’s hidden in plain sight!

As you walk through your city’s streets, don’t shy away from but embrace the many faces you pass by on your journey. Notice the intricacies of the muscle movements beneath their brow. Ponder where they’ve left and why they’ve chosen to leave. Postulate where they’re headed and whether or not it’s a destination they’re looking forward to visiting. Our world is filled with billions of other creatures exactly like us yet, completely understanding them is one of life’s greatest challenges.

Read: Write characters that pop on the page

As time passes, we must be sure to keep a watchful eye over not only the seasonal changes we observe, but also how we interpret their effects.  My mother always said that summer’s heat rolled into our lives like a steaming train on its tracks.

Essentially, my mother felt like the Florida sun was barreling down a set of flaming railroad tracks with the sole intention of burning her alive. She despised the heat and, as a result, so did I. However, it wasn’t until I was able to close my eyes and envision an ice-cold snowstorm freezing over the passionate heat of the summer sun that I ever truly found inspiration from the change in season. Before, I just dreaded weather. Reversing the side effects of any seasonal change is sure to inspire even the most passionless of writers.

Finally, suppose that you have tapped into your most passion-inducing Muse. The one thing that simply never fails to spark a light in the creative sector of that beautiful mind you call your own. Imagine that you have ignited that light and illuminated the darkness that is an inability to create. What better use of that light than to brighten the day of someone else in your world?

Darius McGrew is an intern at and a full time student at Florida State University. He may be contacted at


Darius McGrew

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