Goodreads asked Janet Fitch:

How do you get inspired to write?

Janet Fitch Writers have to feed their heads constantly, like oxygen in a fish tank. I have to bubble my brain by reading writers who inspire me--who feed me with their art. Which is not the same as 'entertainment'--which leaves you the same as you were before. I want a new idea, I want startling images, something jump-out-of-your-skin gorgeous or thought provoking.

I expose myself to art across the spectrum--go to museums and galleries, see dance, listen to great music. Movies are a great source of inspiration for me--certain directors stimulate my creativity, like Bergman and Tarkovsky, the artist Julian Schnabel has become an amazing director. I love an intense drama, like Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf or Streetcar Named Desire. I read a lot of poetry, which is condensed language and emotion, distilled into one tiny packet that explodes in the mind.

I like to read books that make me want to throw them down and run to my computer to write, they excite me that much. I walk around with a notebook, and really look at things, challenge myself to describe what I see.

I'm inspired by people who are energetic and creative, people who are living in an original way. I'm energized by conversations with people who think about ideas, who see in an interesting way. Exposure to unfiltered life inspires me, the unfamiliar. I take all that with me when I sit down to write. It's not the way people often think, that we 'get inspired to write'--we write, so we have to keep the pantry stocked at all times.

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