Where do you look for that illusive particle of inspiration?
This morning as I was catching up on the overnight social media feeds I followed a link in a post by Stan Stewart (muz4now) on Twitter and ended up following a digital trail to a blog post he’d written this time last year on the subject of inspiration.
This gem came at the perfect time for me as I’d been trying to find the inspiration for a blog post for about three weeks without much success. Stan includes a wonderful quote from Jack London in his post,
You can’t wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club.“
That’s a slightly more violent approach to inspiration-hunting than I normally adopt, but as I pondered that thought while driving to work this morning it collided in my mind with another and suddenly I found myself with the inspiration for a series of blog posts that I shall start working on in the next day or two. More on that in due course…
However this in turn prompted the thought that here I was, within 24 hours of news being published that scientists at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) have found what they are coyly referring to as a “Higgs-like particle”, rediscovering something I keep forgetting but (I think) I’ve always known. That is that, while I do get flashes of inspiration out of nowhere from time to time, my inspiration most often comes from the unexpected collision of different ideas…
Towards the end of my drive this morning I caught part of an interview with someone on the Today programme and they expressed the opinion that while this discovery was significant, it was only a door to further discovery. Judging by the news at end of that item on the programme, that the LHC would be closed soon for refurbishment and upgrading so that it can continue to run experiments using even more powerful systems, those discoveries may be even harder to find than the Higgs-like particle.
Jack London’s quote (courtesy of Stan Stewart) inspires me that maybe, like the scientists at CERN, a little bit of violent smashing things together may be the answer (for me at least) to the search for ongoing inspiration.
** Updated **
I came back to edit this three hours after I published it (having spotted something that needed tweaking) and the last paragraph reminded me of a quote from one of my favourite books The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, “
We’ll be saying a big hello to all intelligent lifeforms everywhere… and to everyone else out there, the secret is to bang the rocks together, guys!“
Anyway, I’m off to bang some ideas together and see what sparks.