Writing Inspiration: Delph Woods, dog walkers and the pub at the end of the in-laws garden!!

Spyglass & Kettle, Southbourne - nice coffee!

Sometimes when I talk to people about my quest to become a published author, they ask me where I get ideas from for my stories. I think they expect me to say that there is some magic repository somewhere that I reach into for inspiration..

However, the truth is a lot more prosaic. I get ideas from all around me; listening to music, watching movies, reading books, overhearing snatches of conversation, personal experience, things that people around me have done, or have talked to me about, playing the ‘What If’ game. Sometimes it can be as simple as visiting a place with my family, as below..

This weekend we went to the Spyglass and Kettle pub for a coffee and to have a catch up with my family and I took a fab pic of the sky over the sea in Southbourne whilst I was at it (see pic).

Southbourne Overcliff


Whilst we were there I was talking to my stepdad about when he is planning to retire, which led to a conversation about the proposed removal of the default retirement age and the ageing workforce and – ping! I had a moment of enlightenment for Beth, the main character in my full length MS Random Acts – and the relationship she has with her mum.

We also managed to fit in cleaning the whole house (yawn!) and walking our puppy, Jackson, not once, but twice this weekend. We had great fun taking him down to Delph Woods, where he insisted on picking up sticks twice the length of his body and knocking us over with them, and swimming way out of his depth. 

Delph Woods

This area is only a ten minute drive away and just like last weekend when I realised how lucky I was to live near the beach in Dorset, today I really appreciated how lucky we are to have some very pretty woods so close to home (no, I am not trying to boast!) – pretty amazing when they’re in the middle of a fairly built up area and only fifteen minutes from the town centre.

Yes Jackson, that stick is far too big for you...

Our puppy Jackson - getting bigger every day!

 We met loads of people walking their dogs and they were without exception warm and friendly and all too eager to stand and chat with us whilst the dogs played. And it struck me that there are few situations in life where people are so open to socialising – it’s like dog owners have their own unspoken club, because we have been to the local park and the woods many times before and seldom have we spoken to so many and varied people.  Again – ping! it gave me a great idea for how one of the secondary characters in Random Acts is going to meet her new love interest.

Also, my lovely in-laws have a pub at the bottom of their garden – okay, not a full-on one – but a pub on a small scale nonetheless, and I am definitely aiming to have one myself at some point. It again provided me with some inspiration, because I can definitely imagine Beth and Will getting locked into one together…giving them a chance to get to know each other better – and no doubt the inclusion of alcohol will be a help! 

The In-laws pub!

Would love to hear how or where you find inspiration for writing.

Take care, Nikki.


14 thoughts on “Writing Inspiration: Delph Woods, dog walkers and the pub at the end of the in-laws garden!!

  1. Kathryn Eastman says:

    Getting out and about usually helps me find solutions to writing problems, as well, and I love that “moment of ping” when you overhear something someone says or catch an idea from what’s happening around you or a conversation you’re having. The only downside is the look on most people’s faces when I scrabble in a pocket or a bag for a pen and a notebook and leave them talking to themselves or walking on by themselves while I scribble furiously. Restaurants are the worst time for this to happen, apparently…

  2. Sarah Callejo says:

    My grandparents lived near Bournemouth and I love that area, especially The New Forest. You made me think of it with this post Nikki.
    I don’t know where I get my inspiration to be honest, it’s usually a sentence triggering an idea.

  3. Nicole Ducleroir says:

    Hi Nikki! I’ve found you by way of Talli’s blog. Welcome to the blogosphere! I was inspired this weekend for a new story too — other people’s bad decisions make great fodder for fiction!!

    Hope you have a fabulous week!

  4. PK Hrezo says:

    HI, Nikki! I saw your blog mentioned on Talli’s today. I love meeting new blogger friends. 🙂 I totally agree with you! I find inspiration everywhere I go. All you have to do is stop and observe. Life is happening everywhere and it’s full of ideas. I get inspiration from that pic you posted of the Spyglass and Kettle… what a great name!

    And we dog peeps just have an understanding of one another. 🙂

    Pleasure to meet you. Cheers!

  5. Joanne says:

    Inspiration is all around us, isn’t it? It’s amazing the things we see and observe in everyday life that can make it into our stories. I clicked over from Talli’s, enjoyed browsing here, happy blogging to you!

  6. Jen says:

    I work the same way as you, there is no magic repository where I may go and grab an idea when I’ve run low. Nope I sit outside with my husband outside and enjoy the nice cool breeze in the evenings and stare at the sky watching the stars sparkle on me and think “What if you could catch falling stars?” or look across the freeway and see forest for miles and ask “What if a girl was stuck in there fighting for her last breath?”

    Those moments remind me that I’m a writer and I truly love what I do.

    Amazing blog! Thanks to Talli I’ve come across it and had to stop and say hi! So… hello *waves*

  7. Lydia Kang says:

    Found you from Talli’s blog.
    I agree about getting ideas…sometimes the most mundane things will get my creative side thinking!

  8. nikkigoodmanwannabewriter says:

    Hi everyone,

    thanks so much for your kind and interesting comments. Have to say a big thank you to Talli, the queen of blog, for sending some of you my way.

    It’s lovely to hear that I am not alone in; my admiration of the in-laws ‘pub’/how I get my ideas/newly discovered love of blogging….

    Looking forward to following new blogs and keeping up the posts…Stay in touch *Waving back*

    Take care, Nikki 🙂

    • nikkigoodmanwannabewriter says:

      Hi Chris,

      yes I love it too. Just incredibly frustrating when those moments come few and far between (not an issue at present but has been at times..)!

      Nikki 🙂

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