Thursday, February 4, 2016

There's a Place Somewhere

In October of last year I banged up a leg and came home in a wheelchair. The leg is still not one hundred percent. Well, at least this should help with your writing, you might say, since now I can still sit at a computer all day instead of wandering. Ah, but there is a catch.

My normal routine, pre leg, was to go for a walk before breakfast no matter what the temperature. I would set off for about a two mile stroll at a fair clip as soon as it was light, just me and the dog walkers, out there in the fresh air. Why wait until daylight you say? To help being spotted by the early morning commuters and people like the gentleman I noticed dropping off his child at school and then driving off with his laptop leaning on his steering wheel.

What has all this to do with writing? I am a pantser. Sometimes I start writing a novel with only a first or last sentence, an opening scene, or a single character. Walking a route I have covered over a number of years means I can disconnect a good part of my brain. No nasty comments please. When in need I could freewheel and conjure up new scenes, witty (I think) dialogue, and how to get characters out of, or into, difficult situations.

I realized how important this walking bit was when I started hobbling on a shorter version of the walk last month. This effort took me a few weeks, but now that I don’t have to concentrate on watching my feet, or remembering how to walk without a limp, the literary ideas are flowing again.

I suspect everyone needs a place to go to, either physically, or simply inside their head, while they are searching for inspiration. I never used to worry about writer’s block, but I was getting close to that point until I got back on the move. I have found a new second choice, however. Eyes closed, soaking in a warm bathtub without any interruptions, is a possible alternative.

If you don’t have that idea hideout for your writing, I suggest you discover one that suits your style and mine the ideas you find there.


The Dark Lady Trilogy (Volume 1,2,3)
The Queen’s Pawn (Volume 1) (volume 2, The Queen’s Man, due out shortly!)
The Housetrap Chronicles (Volumes 1 to 7)
Alex in Wanderland,
Knight’s Bridge