I posted recently about life getting in the way of writing. Next week looks set to be the same. I have to go away from home for 2 days for work. However, I have turned the negative thinking into a positive. I am due to spend a night alone in a hotel (first time ever!) and while I will miss my husband and kids, I’m beginning to see it as an opportunity in disguise. I anticipate being able to do considerably more writing than normal. After all, there will be far less distractions. The travelling back in forth in planes and taxis could be put to good use too. I’m certainly full of good intentions. Let’s see how that goes!
The internal editor in me has been dominating again. I have been thinking too much rather than putting words on a page. So, the new plan is to write a bunch of short stories (already underway) and then edit them all at the end before publishing them as an e-book.
So, the internal editor is now on holiday and I have to say, it’s a liberating feeling.
This week has been one of those “life gets in the way” weeks, or to be more precise, work gets in the way. I have struggled through this week thinking about writing but not actually doing much and any writing that I did do was forced and in all honesty, poor. But, Thursday night’s Creative Writing course kick-started me again. We did a short exercise in writing dialogue. We were given a list of pre-determined characters in which we had to pick two and then set up a dialogue between them in a few minutes. The characters I chose were “angry old woman” and “displaced alien”. What follows was the dialogue I wrote. Admittedly, it’s not perfect but it was a fun exercise to do. If I find myself in a slump again like this week, I would definitely repeat this exercise. Silliness is very therapeutic albeit not a route to riches! So anyway, here goes:
“Get out of my garden!” Agnes shouted.
She had become angrier with every year that passed.
“Sorry,” the alien said in a small voice, “I had nowhere else to go.”
“Aww, me heart bleeds for ye! Close the gate on the way out.”
“I am saddened by the harshness in your voice. I would have expected your kind to be more welcoming.”
“Well, I’m sorry to disappoint you but I’m fond of my pansies so clear off!”
The alien turned and walked towards the gate. He turned his head 360 degrees without moving his body and said, “You would be welcome on my planet anytime.”
Agnes threw a garden gnome at him.
As I sat down to write tonight, I took off my socks and realised that this seems to be the norm for me – writing barefoot. It’s not a deliberate ritual, more like a habit but it got me thinking about the rituals of other writers. Some of the greatest writers ever known had some quirky ideas about how to achieve their best. If it works for them – maybe it could work for me!