Saturday, June 16, 2012

Kick’n Back

Writing is an all-consuming activity. It takes perseverance, focus, and daydreaming (i.e. thought). I imagine the process exhausts everyone, for it certainly tires me, sometimes to a mind deadening degree. At those times I go out and pull weeds or prune shrubs and trees, which is very akin to sweeping away cobwebs, and don’t even get me started on what comes to mind when planting seeds or plants that have arrived in the mail. I also like to walk, which of course, not only helps keep the body healthy but also loosens endorphins that kick-start the imagination. And then there is the whole family and friends thing. Lucky people have many of both, but they do demand attention, and rightly so. Whether it is going to weddings, funerals, dinners, parties, kayaking (insert your favorite sport), or just getting together, it all builds relationships, which in turn is an important part of developing characters in fiction. So I guess kicking back is important because doing chores, exercising, taking pleasure in company, or going on vacation is all part of becoming a better writer.

This getting away thing in any form from weeding to vacationing can be difficult. I hate leaving a story, but kicking back is like recharging. When you recharge your mind jumps in fits and quirks, so while relaxing I’m often jumping up to look for scraps of paper and a pen that works to jot down random ideas about characters, setting, or plot points. Perhaps some gene variation makes a person a storyteller, and it affects (perverts?) the brain. Scientists have proven genes control many aspects of our life and personality that no one ever suspected; so maybe. Once started, though, the writing bug never seems to stop, and turning it off is often only a momentary lapse. I find my mind even reads the news with a what-if slant. (Current news reports provide a plethora of story scenarios being played out in the real world that could spur fiction writers of all genres--okay, you know this. I'm good at stating the obvious.) So my advice is to go out and enjoy, work up a sweat, laugh over some food or drink, and certainly do whatever you enjoy besides writing (just be sure you have paper and pen nearby). It all makes you that much better a storyteller.

Rhobin, author of
Protecting Her Own, a romantic suspense from Champagne Books.


Big Mike said...

Me too. My favorite relief is chomping wood or sawing trees.

Michael Davis (
Author of the Year (2008 and 2009)
Award of Excellence (2011)

Julie Eberhart Painter said...

Automatic physical activity gives the mind a change to wander. Muse.

Good blog.

Rhobin said...

Thanks for the comments Mike and Julie.