Hello team! Hup hup! Cheerio and g’day! We are all going to do some STUFF today, and I am here to deliver some inspiration for accomplishing that stuff. (Ok, so some of the inspiration I’m about to give you is actually pretty specifically focused on writing, but you can take that and run with it for your gardening or running or nose hair braiding BECAUSE YOU ARE AMAZING. I really believe this.)

You ARE going to do stuff today, right? I’m assuming, but I feel like it’s a good assumption. I mean, even if you are reading this in your bed and all you’ve done so far is open your eyes, lean over the side of the mattress, retrieve your web-accessible device and start browsing the ‘nets, I am assuming you have at least one thing you are hoping to do well-ish today. And even if you don’t, well, I bet after reading/watching some of these things you’ll change your mind.

Ready? OK!

First up, for a warm up, let’s see what our ol’ pal Ira Glass has to say. I love his voice. You can tell he’s bespectacled, just from his tone, I think. I bet he’d be fun to have dinner with.

You startin’ to feel it? Yeah, me too. Now let’s check in with Alice Bradley, whose writing is phenomenal, and whom I can totally imagine meeting for a cup of coffee in real life (but not a scone, because I hear she has gone Paleo.) Also, she has co-authored a book with a laser-eyed baby on the cover. That’s insta-inspiration right there, yes? Yes.

“My advice to you, then, is to pause for a moment to peer into that brain of yours. This kind of resistance can be slippery. It doesn’t want to be examined, because it wants to trick you. It aims to stop you from writing. People talk about the Inner Critic and Writer’s Block and how to conquer your demons, but sometimes your demons pose as something else entirely. And if you’re fooled, they can win before you even have a clue they’ve paid you a visit.”

-from her Babble blog Write Anyway: “Meet your worst critic. (That would be you.)”

I can tell you are feeling a niggling sense of Get Up And Go. Yes? Yes! You are! (P.S. Don’t half-ass it and just read the quote without clicking on the link to read the whole thing. There’s no half-assing on Inspiration Day!) (Also, this one, which I’ve linked to before, is also top-notch for helping you be kinder to yourself, be brave, and go for it.)

Nextly, (Look, I’m making up words. This is starting to work!) a new-to-me resource for that “Yessss” feeling when I’m feeling particularly depleted of it: Dear Sugar. How to describe Dear Sugar? It’s like Dear Abby, except take away all the boring parts and insert everything amazing about life, ever. Then cover that in chocolate. It’s kind of like that. I want to tell her all my problems and have her call me sweet pea while she dishes out the sharp, hard truth that I need to hear to solve them. But for now, I’ll just read her responses to everyone else’s issues and stock up on the Yessses.

“We get the work done on the ground level. And the kindest thing I can do for you is to tell you to get your ass on the floor. I know it’s hard to write, darling. But it’s harder not to. The only way you’ll find out if you ‘have it in you’ is to get to work and see if you do. The only way to override your ‘limitations, insecurities, jealousies, and ineptitude’ is to produce. You have limitations. You are in some ways inept. This is true of every writer, and it’s especially true of writers who are 26. You will feel insecure and jealous. How much power you give those feelings is entirely up to you.”

– from DEAR SUGAR, The Rumpus Advice Column #48: Write Like a Motherfucker.

(Also, married people/soon-to-be married people/people in a relationship/people who want to be in a relationship one day should read this.)

Look, I’m not sure why I’m being all in your face with the Up And At ‘Ems and Go Get’m Tigers, I guess I just felt like today was the day for it. So go! And do! And kick ass! I’m rootin’ for ya.


1 Samantha { 09.15.11 at 9:00 am }

Awesome, Rach. Totally needed this today.

Also, totally doing a needlepoint of “So write, Elissa Bassist. Not like a girl. Not like a boy. Write like a motherfucker.”

2 racher { 09.15.11 at 9:14 am }

I think they might sell them somewhere! They definitely have mugs!

3 Samantha { 09.15.11 at 10:30 am }

SHUT UP. So awesome.

4 fairytangles! { 09.15.11 at 11:39 am }

[…] it didn’t hit me until this morning when my fabulous friend Rachel posted this really awesome post chockful of inspiration to get the motors revving and running. And in reading all of the articles […]

5 Patrick { 09.19.11 at 8:03 am }

The Sugar link is priceless. THANKS!!!

6 Neely { 09.22.11 at 3:48 pm }

YES! YES! I’m inspired. And I love that Ira Glass series on storytelling. Also I am catching up on my blog reading. I am behind and mad that I missed the whole haiku on your birthday thing. Rats.

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