I’ve often heard the expression, “I’m not ready to write.” We all feel insecure when we’re not sure what “it” is.
Sometimes the material we’ve written comes from the imagination, memory, dreams, and who knows where. Sometimes it’s elusive and genre-bending. What on earth should we do with it in the bright light of day to “make it better”? To ensure it’s a “real piece”?
To nurture our creativity, we all need supportive spaces. We need to do our best, but not pressure for more and more. We should renew our inner resources to overcome obstacles and difficulties.
Especially in these difficult times with wars and pandemic, we need to remind ourselves of the beauty that exists. We need the support of our fellow artists.
I remember seeing on television a cello player performing amidst the rubble of bombed out buildings after an attack by the Russian army on his Ukrainian village. When interviewed, he said, “We’ll rebuild.” His message was one of hope through creativity. It’s an antidote for despair. What do you do to nature your creativity?
Whether you’re been writing for a long or short period of time, we sometimes need motivation to write. I’ve been writing since I was eight years old, but I sometimes get discouraged and lose motivation too.
Blogging is something that motivates my writing. It’s instant gratification. You write and publish instantly, and often get feedback very quickly. And if you have a fair amount of followers, all the better. You don’t have to wait months to hear from a publisher, magazine or journal. It’s out there for everyone to read.
A routine can be an incentive also. I usually write, depending on my appointments that day, right after breakfast. I associate that cereal, fruit and tea with writing and sometimes even start the process while I’m eating. I start thinking about what I’ll be writing after I finish. Writing after breakfast will also give you energy and prevent you from getting sluggish.
Another way to motivate is through social media. I know most of us think of social media as a time waster, but try using it. When you run out of steam with your writing, take a social media break. Look at Facebook or Instagram. I know many people think of it as a time waster, but look at the ideas of other people. You can even use some of the dialog in your writing. If you are on with other writers, you may get incentive from them and their process.
Try reading. I spend a good deal of my non-writing time reading. I’m a poet, so I often read new poets or my favorites. If I’m stuck on a problem, like how to write a particular form, like a Quatern, I’ll read other poets in this form and see how they have handled this. I’ll read novels just for the use of language in certain ways. It’s also just a pleasure for me to read good literature. Sometimes I read my friends most recent books and review them on social media.
I will be blogging on Thursdays about the writing process. Follow me here on WordPress.
For writers, reading is a way of life. We read early and often. We read, we write. We check our media contacts, read newspapers or magazines online or in hard copy, then read a text of something similar to what we are working on in our own writing. If we stop reading, it’s deprivation.
It’s a paradox that by emptying our lives of all that text and distraction, we are actually refreshing the wellspring. By absenting ourselves from all the media, we get in touch with our inner selves, which is where all the creativity comes from. By keeping the inflow to a minimum, the outflow improves. Our true thoughts and feelings will begin to penetrate and come out in new writing, running freely. I knew a playwright who would take off his shoes and socks and stand in a running stream with a paper and pencil to literally get his flow going.
If you find not reading difficult, and many writers do, here are some suggestions:
.listen to music that has no words
.cook a complicated, time-consuming recipe and then
.invite friends to dinner
.rearrange the kitchen
After a number of these activities, sit down and write again. Notice any differences in your feelings or content. Your writing may benefit.
I have a new poem, “Wading in the Roe,” published in this anthology.
The book is available now on Amazon in Kindle and Paperback. The book was prepared in response to the courts ending of rights recognized by the Roe V. Wade decision.
The book is forty-nine uplifting works from Elizabeth Ann Scarborough, Jane Yolen, Jim Wright, Adam-Troy Castro, Samantha Bryant, Marleen S. Barr, Eileen P. Kennedy and more.
This book is not pro-Abortion, but about CHOICE.
Choice is the Soul of Liberty. Choice is the Heart of our Democracy. Choice is the bane of autocrats, of theocrats.
Forty-nine years ago, the Supreme Court recognized Choice as a fundamental liberty.
Autocrats and theocrats have been fighting back ever since. With the overturn of Roe v. Wade, they think they have won.
B Cubed Press, in celebration of forty-nine years of Choice, introduces forty-nine stories to show that Choice cannot be eradicated. It emerges stronger. People demand Choice, not just in reproductive rights, but in our lives. And we are many. We are those who believe that the sanctity of our bodies is our own and not the playground of those who would make us extensions of their religious fervor. We put this book together because it is up to all of us to speak out against oppression of any of us. We are all victims, today or tomorrow, of the unfettered consequences of the overturning of Roe v. Wade. Failure to fight back on behalf of the women affected today, means no one will be there to fight back tomorrow. So stand up, speak out, and fight back. Because Women’s Rights are indeed… Human Rights.
Part of the Proceeds from the sale of the book go to the American Civil Liberties Union.
There is going to be an in-person reading of prose and poetry at Grand Hall, Workshop 13 Cultural Arts and Learning Center in Ware, Massachusetts on Sunday, October 23 at 2 pm. If you’re in the area, do drop in. It’s right down Route 9, which is glorious fall now. Grand Hall is at 13 Church St. , Ware.