Guest Post: What Inspires Julia Karr

(Design & illustration by Robert Roxby)

On this beautiful Tuesday morning, Julia Karr reveals what inspires her to write. I think many of us may share these inspirations:

It’s so sweet that Nova asked me to write a post on what inspires me. I have to say—Nova’s a pretty good inspiration on any day! But, I’ll try to go beyond that… because there was a time when I didn’t know Nova, or any children’s authors except as names on the spines of books that I devoured.

First off then, I’d have to say that reading inspires me. There are so many fabulous books out there in the world—old, new, fiction, non-fiction, digital, papyrus—you name it. And, first and foremost, the written word inspires me. It inspires my creativity and my life. Which, honestly, are one and the same. I would be lost if I weren’t creating something—be it a pot of soup or a pot-boiler!

Add in other creative arts, such as music, paintings, sculpture, performance art, dance, etc.—those, too, are inspiring to me. Maybe it’s because they are created by other people—human beings—just like me. That is inspiring because it lets me know that I am capable, too. Capable of expressing the creative spirit that’s in me.

Then… there’s Nature—capital “N” Nature! From a snowflake to a hurricane—a ladybug to an elephant—there is nothing more inspiring to me than nature: the crisp clean air of an October morning, the dripping humidity of a midwest summer night, the air filled with bird songs on morning in April, or a quiet snowfall on a January night.

And—not to deny the inspiration of love—whether experiencing it firsthand, or seeing the expressions on the faces of a mother with her baby, a dad watching his “little girl” get married, a grandparent helping her grandson take his first steps—these inspire me, too.

I think the combination of all of these things—arts, nature, humanity—serves to move one’s soul to find ways express itself. And, I hope to always be awake to the call of that inspiration.

—Julia Karr

Julia Karr lives in Bloomington, Indiana, with her four cats and one dog. Her love of books led her to be the youngest child to complete her hometown library’s summer reading program—garnering her a photo on the front page of the Seymour Daily Tribune. When her two daughters were little, she wrote them bedtime stories; now that they are grown, she writes novels. Her first book, XVI, a young adult futuristic thriller that began its life as a NaNoWriMo experiment, was published by Speak/Penguin Books for Young Readers in Spring 2011, and the sequel, TRUTH comes out in January 2012.

Visit Julia at

Follow @juliaakarr on Twitter.

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