Thursday, February 20, 2014

Inner Listening

One of the upsides of spending most of the past few weeks snowed in is the quiet. 

I love sitting with books and cats and wine, the fireplace on, all snuggled up.  I’m getting some writing done (although not enough), but quite a bit of reading.  I’ve also used the time (especially when the power’s out) to do more yoga and more meditation.

I’ve had so many external stresses on my life in the past few months that it’s affected the inner space I need in which to work.

As much as I juggle multiple projects and don’t have time for blocks or “life gets in the way” -- or I don’t eat and can’t keep a roof over my head -- I still need time and space for what I call the “inner listening.”

That’s where the story germinates.  Where it percolates until it’s ready to come forth and get on paper.

I like to start from character, then throw the characters into a situation and say, “What if?”

But I need the quiet to hear what they have to say about the “if”.

I disconnect one day a week, usually on Sunday.  Computer stays off, no internet, little to no television.  I’ll play music, but that’s it.  (Once I get a piano, I will physically play music, rather than listening to it).  If I write, it’s in longhand.

I’d stopped doing that for a few months, working online straight through Sunday, and my quality of work fell drastically.  There was too much commotion in my head, and I couldn’t hear the stories.

As over winter as most of us are at this point, when the snow falls, use that as a reason to settle down, get quiet, and listen to the stories forming in your head.

What spills from the page in the following days will be richer for it.

--Annabel Aidan publishes under multiple names.  Champagne released her  paranormal romantic suspense novel ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT.  Visit her online at


Big Mike said...

Boy can I relate. In the last four weeks of frigid cold, snow, being land locked, I've completed 14 chapters in a sequel. More chapters in less time then I've ever done. So glad that I took up writing.

Michael Davis (
Author of the Year (2008 and 2009)
Award of Excellence (2012)

Julie Eberhart Painter said...

I'm more poductive when the weather locks me in and I have fewer distractions. In Cleveland it was snow.

In FL it's the heat May till mid October. Hurricanes usually take me of the power grid, so it's a good time to plot and plan, but not communicate.