Blog, creativity, Journey, rainy day, Writing

The Fog of Writing

Day 29

It has been a successful morning writing. I am still in my pajamas, drinking coffee and writing away the morning. As I glance at my phone I am shocked it is almost noon. I don’t know why I am surprised because that’s what writing does for me. It takes me into another realm.

The Fog

coffeeI get lost in my writing. I am fully engaged with my characters. I feel their emotion and their personality is tangible. I find myself becoming one of the key characters often and it is an interesting transition. It’s part me and part someone I’ve never met. It is a fog that hovers over the line between fiction and reality.

The Rabbit Holes

I try to avoid the rabbit holes and the traps of writing stream of consciousness style. I am not a planner. I do not have outlines and index cards and I do not write out character development. My characters are who they are as my mind moulds their personality and their ideals.

I exchanged some comments with a fellow writer this morning and it is so interesting how we each tackle things differently. I will not even consider editing — especially during NaNoWriMo — until the writing is finished. That takes enough out of me. But I do understand when you fall into a rabbit hole, you need an out. And editing may be the only way out.

Outside the Fog

It takes an hour or so for the writing fog to dissipate. I am still in it, though. But I can focus on the hows and whys I started down a particular path. What was I trying to accomplish? How far down a path can I go without losing my reader. I must be careful not to overthink it though. It is a very precarious line to walk.

Trusted Readers

In Stephen King’s book On Writing, he talks about the importance of having a “trusted reader” — someone who will read your work and give you an honest critique. This person cannot be afraid of hurting your feelings and is willing give you honest feedback about what makes sense and what throws the storyline off.

My sister, BJ, was my trusted reader. She knew me and she wrote eloquently herself. She was a call it like I see it kind of person. My sister passed away and I miss her in so many ways much more important than this. But there is a certain vulnerability a writer cannot have with just anyone. It takes a person you trust to expose yourself in such a raw way.

rainyWriting Weather

I am much more successful writing on days like today. It’s overcast and there is a light trickle of rain falling. I find this weather relaxing but it does not entice me outside. Curling up with my laptop on my lap seems the ideal way to spend the day. I wonder if I am the only one that likes certain days better than others when I write.

Now, it’s time for a quick shower and a bite of lunch. Then back to the writing. By that time I hope I have answered the question: “Should she?”

“In many cases when a reader puts a story aside because it ‘got boring,’ the boredom arose because the writer grew enchanted with his powers of description and lost sight of his priority, which is to keep the ball rolling.” 
Stephen King

 

art, Blog, Cooking, creativity, Food, friends, jewelry, Relaxation, Writing

Downtime

Day 25

Day 25 — wow, that is almost a month. I must say this has been a little easier than I anticipated, but I still have 11+ months to go so I should not be getting too cocky about this yet. It has been good for me. My blog is like my best friend. I come here to unload my problems or just chat about my day.

I am still recovering from yesterday. I slept in fairly late, but I blame that on the medicine I took yesterday. I am feeling better, but still have moments here and there that let me know I am not yet recovered.

Taking it Easy

As I said, I got up late but managed to fix some breakfast for hubby and I. Just simple scrambled eggs and toast. It was nice to just sit together and chat for a few minutes. Just fixing a little breakfast took more energy than I thought, so I sat down and caught up on email and social media.

NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) is coming up in a few days and I tried to recruit a few people to write along with me. So far, one person — everyone else — no cigar. I probably will not meet my goal, but I am going to give it a try. Who knows, I might just come up with the next great American novel.

I had an enjoyable video chat with my daughter and my youngest granddaughter who is home sick this week. Technology is amazing and I am always so excited to see her and see how much she has changed. She is at the age where every day it is some new word or new action. It fills my heart with such joy.

We had tuna salad for lunch and then I had a quick chat with my son who filled me in on all the fun of my granddaughter’s birthday party that we unfortunately missed. It’s always nice to chat with him, except that I learned my grandson is sick with a virus. At least it is nothing serious. My poor little ones!

Creating

ButterBell
Butter Bell

Today was the perfect day to pull out those watercolor pencils I bought. I have not tried to sketch anything in so long I was very tentative about it. I did play with some rough sketches a little. Results were not great, however, I am pleased with at least the effort. I know the more I practice the better it will be. I’ve not used watercolor pencils much so that will be a bit of a learning curve as well.

I created a new cover for my Facebook page that reflects how I am feeling about the hate so prevalent in our world right now. It makes me feel better to find some outlet to express how I feel, but I also know my vote is the most powerful action I can take.

44943354_10156876839606057_2837108756964179968_oAfter lunch I managed to take a few pictures of the rings I made in my ill-fated weekend workshop. They do not have the finish I would have liked, but I am happy with them just the same. At least I am creating again and that feels good.

I have a pot of chili on the stove simmering in preparation for dinner and hopefully some quarts to go into the freezer. I was inspired after hearing my good friend Lauren was enjoying some split pea soup. I love split pea soup but it is the one soup that always fails me!

All in all it was a good day of rest and creativity. A welcome respite from the chaos of the world.

How was your day?

IMG_2615

“Rest and be thankful.”
William Wordsworth

 

 

 

 

art, Blog, creativity, Lapidary, retirement

Creativity

Day 19

When I decided to retire, I did not give a lot of thought about how I would spend my time. I knew I would take some classes and do some traveling and visit family, but as far as how I might choose to spend the majority of my waking hours, I just did not consider it.

After working for so long, you imagine what retirement will be like. For me, it has been wonderful. I have not missed going to a full time job and working for someone else. Even when I had my own business, I was always working for someone else — my clients. Sure, I could set my own hours but there were still demands. I wanted my retirement to be as ‘demand free’ as possible.

Dreams Realized

I have always self-identified as an artist. I am unfortunately not disciplined enough to work hours on end, apply to shows, advertise and sell my work. I just love to create and I do it for my own satisfaction more than anything else.

meteredLearning to cut stones has always been a dream of mine so I was really excited when I discovered the arts and crafts school here offered lapidary classes. I have taken the same class many times because I do not have the equipment to do the grinding at home. It is also a very messy proposition, which requires a studio dedicated to this type of work.

This morning was my last lapidary class. I finished a few metered pieces and worked on a few freehand pieces. I am always sad to see my classes come to an end because I lose myself in the work.

Silver Jewelry

My other dream was to make more jewelry using sterling or fine silver. I have done a lot of bead work, but as I age and my eyes get worse, it is harder to work with beads. My mind usually goes to the more asymmetrical designs which is not always the design of choice for people buying jewelry. I still make survival bracelets for victims of sexual abuse, but not much else.

engagement ringsI took several classes in Florida before we moved to North Carolina. I even made engagement rings for my daughter and my now daughter-in-law. Talk about stressful! I have taken a few classes since, but again, this work again requires specialized equipment and a dedicated workspace. I love this work even if I do not have a studio of my own.

This coming weekend I am taking a workshop with Molly Sharp. She is an incredibly talented jewelry designer and silversmith. She is also a kind and effective teacher. I am really looking forward to the class this weekend – I’m sure you will hear and see more about it after the workshop is over.

The Urge to Create

Taking continuous classes is not fiscally possible so I have been looking for something creative to do when I am not enrolled in art classes. I have been so inspired by Maitri Libellule and her whimsical watercolors of Anna. They are bright and beautiful and unapologetically Maitri.

watercolor pencilsI have also been drawn to the sketches of Lisa Wagner, who writes an amazing blog entitled “Places of the Spirit”. She has also been spending some time creatively and sharing that work on her blog. So, between the two of these talented women, I have been inspired to try to do a few drawings. I picked up some new watercolor pencils at Michaels, so I will see where this takes me.

These are the activities that I dreamed I would have more time for once retired. So far, I have been successful, but I am really looking forward to having more rainy day activities that do not require a studio and an elaborate equipment set up.

Driveway
As I left for class, the view out my front door morning was delightful. I love this area and now that the trees are starting to turn, I especially love the view. The dogwood trees are finally showing color from top to bottom and it will not be long before the leaves are blanketing my driveway.

“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.” 
Maya Angelou