Discuss: Lighting that Fire


Yesterday we talked about writing what you love. It’s a simple enough piece of advice, but now you need to find out what it is that you love enough to incorporate into your writing. In terms of topics or subjects to write about, I would say the best way to find your passion is to figure out your default interest, that specific thing that lights your fire.

I think we all have one of these–when you’re given the chance to learn about something or read something written in a certain time period, where do you turn? Are you crazy about Victorian era romance? Can you never get enough of WWII mysteries? What is it that just gives you goosebumps and makes you super excited? We all have something, so if you think about it for long enough you’re sure to find your own.

There is a different way of finding the writing motifs that you love enough to incorporate into your own work. I was recently thumbing through No Plot? No Problem!, which is a small writing handbook written by the founder of National Novel Writing Month–Chris Baty. In this little tome, Baty suggests creating a personal magna carta.

This is how the “magna carta” works. Maybe you love when a female lead has no romantic interest, or when the male lead works in a coffeeshop, or when animals are heavily involved in the plot. These are all things that you adore in books that you read. Whenever you think of one of these things, write them down in your magna carta. Then you can reference that list later if you’re stuck or don’t know where to take your story next. The list serves to remind you of what you love to read, which may inspire you to include some of those special aspects in your own story.

So, how about you? What are the topics that light your fire? What are some writing motifs that you love to read? Share in the comments!

— Jet Fuel Blog Editor, Mary Egan