Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Finding New Inspiration by Kate Breslin | Guest Post

Finding New Inspiration

“Feeding the Muse” is an expression most artists and writers recognize. The word Muse originated in ancient Greek mythology, describing “any of the nine sister goddesses presiding over song and poetry, and the arts and sciences” (Merriam Webster online.) It also means “a source of inspiration.”

Feeding the Muse is essentially about replenishing the well of one’s creativity, by opening the mind to fresh ideas and helping us find new inspiration to do our best work.

As a Christian author of historical fiction, I pray daily to be inspired. I also turn to my research, and with three novels set during wartime, I don’t need to go far to find real and amazing stories from the past that touch my heart and give me fresh insight. In my most recent novel, High As The Heavens, I based my fictional tale on actual events that took place in Belgium during WWI, and the ordinary people who accomplished the extraordinary; men and women who rose above their own fear to save lives and survive impossible odds. Honestly, I never get tired of reading about the strength of the human spirit. It reinforces my belief in the basic goodness of mankind, and it gives me a glimpse into what God intended when He made us in His image. With so much negativity in the media today, I find stories of true heroism incredibly uplifting.

Being outdoors also plays a big part in “feeding my Muse” and I love taking long walks in the wooded areas near our Western Washington home. To me, nature’s perfection is proof of the Divine and being surrounded by unspoiled beauty draws me closer to God and fills me with a sense of the poetic. My second novel, Not By Sight, is set amidst the beautiful British countryside of Kent, also known as the “Garden of England.” Though I’ve yet to visit Britain, I was inspired to write from my own knowledge of nature, describing fields of red-tipped grass, and the orange glow of a setting sun. I knew the sweet smell of mown hay and the soft buzz of bees in the humid days after a summer’s rain.

Traveling to new places always offers me fresh insight as well. Remember the last time you took a road trip, or just a spent an afternoon at the park? New sights, sounds, and smells all work to give us a new perspective on life. In fact, my recent trip to Barcelona, Spain, inspired me to finish plotting out my upcoming 2019 release from Bethany House, Far Side of The Sea. When I returned home to work on the story, I knew my character’s way around the Spanish port where he would gaze at the boats bobbing on the blue waters of the Mediterranean Sea, and the delicious smells of Catalan cuisine that would drift to him from a beachside café.

Crossing an ocean to visit new lands isn’t the only way to travel, however. Meet Esther Bielmeier, whose job was heating rivets used for building ships at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard during the First World War. Esther’s statue is located in our downtown’s Memorial Plaza, and I’ve found that along with our Naval Museum and Historical Society, home can be a great place for “feeding the Muse” and finding new inspiration!

Kate Breslin: Former bookseller-turned-author Kate Breslin enjoys life in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and family. A writer of travel articles and award-winning poetry, Kate received Christian Retailing's 2015 Best Award for First Time Author and her novel, For Such A Time, won the 2015 Carol award for Debut Novel. Kate's third novel, High As The Heavens released in June 2017. When she's not writing inspirational fiction, Kate enjoys reading or taking long walks in Washington's beautiful woodlands. She also likes traveling to new places, both within the U.S. and abroad, having toured Greece, Rome, and much of Western Europe. New destinations make for fresh story ideas. Please visit her at www.katebreslin.com.

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High As The Heavens 
by Kate Breslin

A British nurse in WWI German-occupied Brussels, Evelyn Marche spends her days at the hospital and her nights working at a café . . . or so it seems. Eve's most carefully guarded secret is that she also spends her nights carrying out dangerous missions as a spy for a Belgian resistance group.

When a plane crashes as she's en route to a rendezvous, Eve is the first to reach the downed plane and is shocked to recognize the badly injured pilot as British RFC Captain Simon Forrester. She risks her life to conceal him from the Germans, but as the secrets between them grow and the danger mounts, can they still hope to make it out of Belgium alive?

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