For the tenth time this month, I sit at my desk and stare at the blank space on the computer screen—my hands in position on the keyboard, potential energy coursing through my fingers. And for the tenth time this month, I let my mind wander. I sit back, take a sip of my turmeric latte (because coffee is apparently no good for my fragile hormones), and I think.

There's a lot going through my head these days—both exciting and overwhelming—but the trouble is focusing on just one thing that keeps me interested long enough to write about it. 

Buying a house?
Looking for employment?

Those are the big things happening around these parts, and yet I have no desire to write about them. They are too adult for me, not nearly as captivating as falling in love for the first time, learning to quiet my 23-year-old angst, or having life-changing revelations in Rome. Perhaps a sign that everything's running too smoothly? (I'll take it.)

So instead, I read. I lose myself in murder mysteries and Darling Magazine, quirky cookbooks, news articles, and my favorite lifestyle blogs. Self-help books on tidying, novels with strong heroines, and the occasional short story fill my quiet evenings and afternoon walks. And life becomes simple again. Sweet. Slow.

When my writing muscle is weak, I return to my true love of reading—and am quickly reminded of why I began writing in the first place. The magic is in the words and the way they make people feel. It's in the stories told from personal experience, the adjectives used to describe a homemade pastry or a broken heart, the em dashes and parenthesis added for emphasis, and the unique voice infused into each line. Inspiring, genuine, and imperfect.

It's this reminder that makes me return to my desk once again, even if I think I have nothing of substance to say, and simply write what comes to me—good or bad, interesting or not—in hopes that my words will flow like magic.