by Kari Lavelle

Thank you for this opportunity to write about two of my favorite subjects, creativity and the power of an idea! This blog has inspired me for many years—how wonderful to start the year off with curiosity, looking around me for any bright, shiny, new ideas. The magic that in any moment, an imaginative spark will zing its way into my brain!

When people ask how I got the idea for WE MOVE THE WORLD, I share that it all stemmed from my FOMO (fear of missing out). In 2017, I was traveling and not able to participate in the Women’s March in Austin, TX. I missed it again in 2018, too. My intense FOMO got me thinking about why people walk for different causes. I researched other causes people walk for and wrote a manuscript titled WE WALK. A few revisions later, that manuscript sold to HarperCollins. (And then I rewrote it several times before we landed on the finished product of WE MOVE THE WORLD.)

One purpose for walking I didn’t include in the original manuscript was creativity. Researchers consistently suggest walking to boost creativity. So the next time you’re wondering where all the ideas are or how to craft that perfect ending, put on your sneakers and walk out the door.

A few questions as your feet hit the pavement:

  • Do you need to reflect on a specific plot point of a current manuscript?
  • Or do you need to just daydream?
  • Is there a podcast that ignites your imagination?
  • What happens when you indulge different senses? Or walk slower? Or faster?
  • Do any of your neighbors inspire you to create a character? (Tread carefully here!)
  • How can you get more curious? More playful? More open to your imagination?

A central theme within WE MOVE THE WORLD is that change happens with small steps. The more I share this message, the more I internalize that my own progress happens in small increments. This theme has been especially helpful to me as we navigate these tricky times. During the pandemic, I started walking our dogs twice a day—and it’s no coincidence that I’m working on a dog-themed manuscript featuring several of my neighborhood pets.

I am quite behind on my own Storystorm ideas this month, so I’m off to take another walk. One step at a time. One imaginative spark at a time. I wish you all abundant creativity, lovely winter walks, and zero moments of FOMO in 2022!

Kari Lavelle is the author of WE MOVE THE WORLD (HarperCollins 2021). She has always had a love of words: as a kid reading books, as a speech pathologist helping children communicate, and now as a writer creating stories. She lives in Austin, Texas with her husband, two children, and two dogs. Learn more about Kari and her books at and follow her on Instagram @karilavellewrites and Twitter @karialavelle.

Kari is donating a signed copy of WE MOVE THE WORLD and a 30-minute ZOOM that can be used for anything (picture book critique, career consultation, chatting about favorite books). These are two separate prizes!

You’re eligible to win if you’re a registered Storystorm participant and you have commented once below.

Prizes will be distributed at the conclusion of Storystorm.