How to Get Back to Writing

So interesting to read Colleen's post, below.  After weeks on the road lecturing and leading workshops, giving my guru-energy to others and gently and generally setting writing aside for a time so that the work (and I could) rest and recharge at the well of human contact, the voice inside me (as I said it would in this post) told me that it was enough.  Time to begin again.  Time to sit and write and revise again.  And so I did, beginning a few days ago.  How good it felt.  The back of my chair.  Wing of cherrywood.  The heart, the keys ready to take the punch again.


There are habits I've developed over the years to get back into writing when I've been away from it for a spell.  One is not to make too big of a deal of it.  Don't start on Monday.  Pick a casual day of the week (I chose last Thursday), and if possible go back and revise something that has already been written (you see it so clearly now, don't you, you can get a handle on it, whereas a month ago it was ice at the bottom of a very deep bucket).  Slash and burn with delight (keep a copy of the original document because you may get a little overzealous at this point, what with all that recharged energy scraping the letters off your keyboard.  Will someone please invent a keyboard that doesn't succumb this way?).  If you are beginning something new, give yourself some time to prologue (log in) and  preamble (ramble) and clear your throat with sentences or lines of poetry you're probably not going to keep anyway, but will get you in the mood again, will remind you of how fun and wasteful creativity can be (not everything is precious) and how wonderful it feels to be doing doing doing until the moment something clicks (this will feel like the right color crayon levitating out of the box).  And there you are.

Try not to go until you are completely spent, that first day or week.  Save a little, hold back.  There's plenty more where that came from.  This is not Black Thursday.  The store will not run out.

And finally, no deadline, not just yet, please, at least.  It's all right to play, for a little while.  To remember why you started puzzling over words in the first place, how odd and flimsy and feisty they are, to remember how they sink on you and then suddenly bob up again, to remember the slipperiness, and laugh.  Shiny, funny things.

Back to writing.  Back to chair.  Back to life.



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