CENTER OF CONFUSION

Video

Lost ConfidenceI wish this look could swipe over me. A form of utter calm and no worries. Have you ever been so overwhelmed that you want to throw the dishes in the garbage, the radio along with the dishes, the television hit with a baseball bat (if you have one), and the computer hidden and you can’t remember where? I’m sure we have all had these days, even weeks, and why? I don’t know about you, but I want things done and not have to wait until later. After all my years on the Planet Earth, I should be able to shrug and let pieces fall where they want. But, this is wishful thinking and you know what–I’m glad. It means I am still around and kicking. No make that writing.

Do you ever feel like things hit you dead center at the most inopportune time? My computer started hanging up. Nothing would work, except alt control delete or OFF. And this was right when new scenes were flying through my head for another book. Yes, pen and paper were handy, but my writing is not the best in the world. Since the computer, I’ve even forgotten how to make the writing legible. Any way, I tried and could not read my own handwriting. So, I waited a day and tried again. Nada.

Another idea hit…a tape recorder. Somewhere, I had put an old-fashioned one and knew how to operate this. Now where? A search of almost every drawer in my home became the focus point, and search I did. Until, the one drawer became evident. You know the one that catches everything. There it was hidden under scads of odds and ends and it worked when I turned it on.

Not to let the words escape me, I began recording what I could remember for the new book. It was like my fingers running over the keyboard, but instead my voice hitting the airwaves of the recorder. Then, squawk, squeak, screech, and nothing. Guess batteries don’t last forever. So, excuse me, as I need to get to the store and pick up a couple. No, wait a minute, look I am hitting the keys and my computer has returned to normal.

Yes, we all have our good and bad days. We all have interruptions. We all have intrusions in our lives, but this tells us we are alive and kicking. We do have time to get things done and complete our novel.

Head to your favorite writing corner, put on your coat of armor, and let the words fall out whichever way they can: paper, pen, napkins, tissue paper. You’ve got the words to use and this is what we are all about…writing.

Happy You. Happy Writing.

Advertisements

WHAT MAKES YOU WRITE?

images_014

A not so simple question. One that does not fit every writer. Some writers get up and can’t wait to hit the computer keys. Their minds overflowing with thoughts or dreams from the night. Some don’t wait for the computer, but find themselves scribbling down bits and pieces from a pad beside the bed. Others carry a notebook or use the napkin at the restaurant. Compulsive? Nope. These are writers who know writing is in their heart, head, and are helpless to do anything but write.
Others, write, but only when the mood strikes them. A television show pulls them away from writing. They want to write, but become bored with the same characters day after day. If they decided to write something different, they feel guilty leaving their characters hanging in a scene. Or, they have so many stories started and cannot finish one. Still they want to write, more out of habit than from their heart.
How can we get back to the conscious desire to connect to our writing? I asked some of my writer friends to help me out with this blog. No, I will not use names, as a matter of privacy, but I did get some great suggestions.
1. When was the last time you really enjoyed writing? Take yourself on a backward journey. Do you remember what you were writing: poetry, short story, novel, or an article? Were you writing with a pen, pencil, on notebook paper, in a small journal, or on the computer? Can you picture yourself and feel the joy? Then go back to whatever method of writing you were doing and start this same practice today. Not tomorrow. Today, when this is fresh on your mind.
2. Stop trying to write. Yes, we are told if you are a writer, you must write every day. Do not believe everything you hear. What will happen if you miss a day or a few days? Nothing. Your characters stay the same until you change them. The setting won’t blow off the paper and the hero/heroine will still get their chance at love. In fact, you might have some new ideas.
3. Take yourself to a quiet spot. Leaves the kids at home, do NOT bring your cell; well, okay bring it for emergency uses but leave it off. Take a long walk and notice the different trees, flowers, paths and other walkers. Be observant of everything you see, hear, and feel. No, don’t write them down, keep them in your memory. Plant these images or feelings deep, and they will be there when you need them later.
4. Be gentle and remind yourself this is your ‘catch-up’ period. You can push yourself only to a point, and then the well runs dry. Take some deep breaths and relax. You need to revitalize your writing experiences. Your ideas will begin to flow again and the frustration or boredom will disappear. You will be energized to keep ‘going and going and going’.
See which of these fits you and your writing. Maybe all. Maybe none. But somewhere in your writing, you will come up against the dry spell. Hey, not to worry. Relax. Smile. Walk. Energize thoughts, and you will not be able to find a pen, paper, notebook, or computer fast enough.

HAPPY WRITING TO ALL

P.S.I’d love to hear your ideas, too.

WRITING AS A HEALING TOOL?

energyNow, you have a chance to use your writing as a healing tool. Does this mean you need to journal every whim you feel? No, but let’s take a look at what we can do to help ourselves survive as a human being and a writer, at the same time.

Our brain helps us, as writers, engage in new characters and ignite relationships with characters. These relationships can be positive or negative, and we have to decide which it will be. As positive writers, we push our characters forward and make steps to improve their lives. Then with the negative, we give our characters a glimpse of the downside of their lives. We are the controller of characters. As writers, we can heal the past.

Open a 3-ring, notebook and begin with an original trauma you cannot put to bed. Free write. Do not stop and read. Forget spelling, punctuation, or any other format. What you want to do is write how you feel. You might have 5 or 50 pages. You might write for an hour, or two, or three. Do not count–just write. Once these feelings come out, you can name them, and see how they take on a different attitude.

Skip a few pages and write these findings to another person. This is your invisible partner and you can pour out all of your feelings from what you have learned. Let your sub-conscious dictate your words and feelings. Do not go back and change or erase. Let your free write take over your mind and paper. Yes, you heard right…a pen or pencil. No keystrokes allowed. There is something interactive between your head, heart, hand, and pen. Let go and give your hand and pen permission to write from corner to corner, across the page, turn the book upside down and write. There are no rules, just writing.

Another part of the notebook is for editing. This is where you put distance between what you wrote so you can vent your frustrations. Put your censor in a box and lock the lid. Read again and label each feeling with your own choice of words. Keep writing. Once the words appear for the labels, you will be surprised at the difference you have for any troubled parts of your life. Each day, you can conquer a label.  These labels are your ‘gut’ reaction, which comes from deep within. Do not change, but if you want to add something try a different colored pencil or draw a picture.

This is YOUR notebook, YOUR feelings, YOUR labels.

Next time, we will see how creative writing cam come from what you have discovered about yourself. Close your notebook, smile, and know you have traveled a long road in a short time. You have conquered the hard work, and now your creativeness will flow.

HAPPY WRITING.

CREATE – NOW!

An IdeaWhat? I have to think and think before I can create.

You are a writer, right?

Yes, but what does this have to do with creating?

You have to train, train and keep training.

Even if you have the position of a ‘gopher,’ you have to learn new ways to go for this and go for that.

But, you are a writer. You need to generate ideas or your story will go stale and never appear, even in your head. Look at all the things, yes things, around you. How creative can you get tying shoelaces. Go for the small ideas and make them gigantic.

Look at newspapers, magazines and small free mags in your city. Is there something you see that looks out of place. Check it out. This makes you stretch your imagination and gives you more ideas. You see a story about a special jewel. What makes this so intriguing? Could this jewel be part of your next suspense story? Where did you find it? If you are into romance, where did your lover get this expensive stone, when he does not even have a car? When he slips it on your finger, does your stomach do flops, your heartbeats race, or do you take it off and throw the ring down on the floor.

Your imagination is in full-throttle. Do not waste a second, and remember to take your notebook and pen with you on the way out of your door. Whatever your chose as the holder of your scribblings is your choice. I love a steno pad. Why? I can write on one side, turn the whole notebook over and write on the other side. Makes everything more interesting.

Observe what is around you: sights, sounds and smells. Each leaves a different avenue for you to travel. Do not use your computer or smartphone. No, get your body outside and walk different streets, stop in unusual stores, check out unique restaurants and look for a park.

Now, you have a few ideas in your head; put these down on your word document any way you want. They become pages of ideas and writings. Before you get too excited, look at what appears on the pages. Did you color your imagination with cliche’ tags? Look again at all of your writing ideas and delete the cliche’ words. Insert new thoughts, new ideas and new ways of writing the old standby words.

Change your pace: speed up your words or slow down and watch how the sentences change the entire store. Stop and read some of your favorite authors. Look at how they shorten sentences to make the pace faster, and then turn around and lengthen the sentences to slow the reader down.

Angry? Maybe your character is so mad you cannot show these actions. Make your sentences choppy with no real answer. Sad? Lengthen your sentences and expose your reader to an unhappy lifestyle. Paranormal? Let your character soar to another planet, one of which the partner has no idea of existence.

These are just a few ways to zap into creativity. In a few days, we will tackle more avenues for your creativity to hide and pop out at a moments notice.

Practice getting your creativity out of your head and onto the paper or screen. Get yourself out into the world. Look, see, pretend and soon you will have no problem to grab creativity by the hands full.

Go. Get started – like now.

Enjoy the hunt, Patricia