Welcome back to our online discussion on the book, On Being a Writer: 12 Simple Habits for a Writing Life that Lasts, by Ann Kroeker and Charity Singleton Craig!

If you don’t have the book yet, you can pick up a copy here.

I have so enjoyed the interaction that has taken place so far around chapters 1 and 2.

If you missed the first two chapters on Identify and Arrange, you’re definitely going to want to go back and check them out by clicking here and here.

For an overview of the whole six-week discussion including some suggested writing prompts and link-up themes, click here.




So today we’re discussing Chapter 3, on the topic of Surround.

Here are co-authors Ann and Charity with some interaction on this theme:



Have you ever had writer’s block?

Run out of inspiration?

Couldn’t come up with an interesting topic to write about?

In this chapter, Ann and Charity share from their own experience about how they draw from their surroundings and incorporate those surroundings into their writing lives. They write about how they intentionally and unintentionally surround themselves with people, settings, and circumstances that will generate ideas and inspiration for their writing.

In the video above, Charity says, “Typically, the best way to find things to write about is to surround yourself with the things you’re most interested in writing about.”

It sounds simple enough, right?

But are you doing it? Am I?


“Surrounding yourself means immersing yourself into whatever it is that you’re most interested in writing about.” ~ Charity Singleton Craig


On her personal blog, Ann Kroeker recently shared a post on How to Generate Ideas for Writing. Definitely worth reading and bookmarking for later reference.

What do you surround yourself with? Does it inspire you? Is it intentional, such as going to an art museum, or unintentional, like when you find yourself on the sidelines of your son’s soccer game?

Art museums and soccer games alike could lend themselves to usable content, if we think about it and put forth the effort.

If I already have a topic idea, but just can’t seem to get into the “groove” of writing and finding my voice, I often turn to writers whose style I adore. I read just a few pages, feel the movement and cadence in their voice, and am soon inspired to write more beautifully myself.

What tricks do you use?

How can you make use of your current surroundings and turn your unique situation into a blog post, article, journal entry, or chapter in a book?


Link-up topic suggestions:

Write your own blog post or journal entry on one or more of the following topics: 
Take a step back and consider what you most often write about. Does it reflect the things you surround yourself with? Does it reflect what you’d like to be writing about? 
What new topics or ideas would you like to tackle in your writing life? What can you surround yourself with, in order to make that happen? 
What changes should you make to surround yourself with inspiration, when you hit a dry patch in your writing life? 
Make a list of places you can visit, music you can listen to, books you can read when you’re lacking ideas for writing content
What inspires you in relation to your writing? Are there certain writing “voices” you just love? Who are they? What do you love about their style of writing? 

Go ahead and share your thoughts in the comments and/or link-up below — then come back on Wednesday (August 26th) to chat about Chapter 4, “Notice.”

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