Monday Inspiration: Creativity Through Chaos

"The maker of a sentence launches out into the infinite and builds a road into Chaos and old Night, and is followed by those who hear him with something of wild, creative delight. " ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

(The Starry Night by Vincent van Gogh, 1889)

Webster Dictionary definition of Chaos:

The infinity of space or formless matter supposed to precede the existence of the ordered universe.

In other words, chaos offers organic unpredictability, a swirling mess of ideas or matter, that comes together as unique order. From chaotic thought rises art and engineering. It all begins with unfettered imagination. In other words, chaos.

Writing, to me, is making sense of the chaos of our ideas. Happy writing!

This post today is special, because it's part of Rachel Firasek's Meet Me Monday blog hop. So check the rest out!

Author Jeannie Lin Shares The Inspiration Behind Her Amazing Romances

Sometimes there's nothing more inspiring than other people. So I have decided to occasionally invite other creative sorts I admire to share what inspires them. For my first guest we have Jeannie Lin, she of the amazing Asian stories and gorgeous covers.

(Released Sept. 20, 2011...Woot!)

So what inspires Jeannie Lin?

I think this answer changes every time I think on it, but when I get down to the root of it, I'm inspired by my mother.

Of course, Mum is getting extra points right now because I'm back in southern California for a brief visit and she's been feeding me home cooked meals.

When I was in third grade, Mum told me how if you write down your stories and they were good enough that people liked them, they'd make your story into a book and pay you for it. Money for stories? I became absolutely enamored with the idea and wrote so much that summer that my hand seized up and I got a writer's callous that I can still feel to this day. It's my badge of honor (Writer's callouses -- do people get those anymore?)

So when people ask what inspired me to write, I like to say the money, but the truth is it was my Mom.
Her real inspiration for me was her attitude about getting things done. I think her response to my sister's lament of writer's block sums it up: "I guess you're not creative enough." This may come off as cruel and Tiger Mom-ish, but it's not. In my mother's universe, every problem has a solution and if you know that, then it's just up to you to find it.The answer is within your own grasp. When I was submitting BUTTERFLY SWORDS and facing rejection after rejection, I told myself one thing and it kept me going more than any words of encouragement ever could: "I guess the writing's not good enough...yet." 

grew up fascinated with stories of Western epic fantasy as well as Eastern martial arts adventures. When her best friend introduced her to romance novels in middle school, the stage was set.

Jeannie started writing her first romance while working as a high school science teacher in South Central Los Angeles. After four years of trying to break into publishing with an Asian-set historical, her 2009 Golden Heart® Award–winning manuscript, Butterfly Swords, sold to Harlequin Mills & Boon. With two releases and four more upcoming titles all set in the Tang Dynasty, she's keeping her fingers crossed that this hard-sell genre will one day be hard to resist.

As a technical consultant, backpacker and vacation junkie, she's traveled all over the United States as well as Europe, South Korea, Japan, China and Vietnam. She's now happily settled in St. Louis with her wonderfully supportive husband, and she continues to journey to exotic locations in her stories.

Visit Jeannie Lin online at

Thanks for visiting Jeannie! And your stories are better than good glad you keep writing and showing that different or difficult stories can still find a place. You are inspiration.
Any questions for Jeannie? Who inspires you?

How about some HOT inspiration to sizzle up your Monday?

Check out my first cover! Is that not inspiring?

WooHoo! Happy dancing in West Texas!

 The Djinn's Dilemma is coming to an ebook reader near you in November. :)

Writing is Exploration

(Photo Credit Mina Khan)

The more I write, the more I discover myself and the world. I write to find my destination.
Happy exploring!

Here's a poem to inspire you:

The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth.

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same.

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I--
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

A Writer, a few limes and ideas

All people, no matter what their passion, profession or part in life, tend to burn out from time to time. So they must replenish themselves and seek out inspiration from the world around them. I find this to be true of myself and I often go foraging for something that will spark a thought, quicken my pulse or give me the courage to create.

So I'm dedicating my writing blog to things I find inspiring and my thoughts on my creative process, in the hopes I can share that magical touch of the muse with other fellow seekers.

Today, I give you limes.

Writing is not always easy. Often working with an idea is like working with a lime. Lush green and so alive, yet hard and unyielding at first touch. You have to massage the idea like you would a lime, make it more workable. Then you have to squeeze every bit of juice out it, fish out the seeds (rubble), and mix in other ingredients (or ideas). In the end you have limeade or margaritas. Either way, cheers! As a writer you always have choices.

So what's your choice? Limeade or margarita? Well, have a glass of it, visit, and I hope you come again.