The writing process is different for me on different days, and I’m never quite sure what to expect when I begin. Sometimes it flows easily and quickly and I go with it, knowing I can come back and edit later. Other days I get caught on a single word or line. When that happens, I have two tricks that I try, and one of them works almost every time. If I’m stuck, I first put in a chunk of time at my studio table (where I write and work on illustrations), and do a little figurative head-banging as I stare at the words and my sketches and think. Then I either head outside and go for a run, or I take a break from what I’m working on and write or draw something for someone else, just for fun.
Since Adam Rubin wrote about taking an exercise break (which really, really works!), I’ll focus on my second trick. Actually, it’s not a trick. It’s just a way to get out of my head and remind myself that the whole point of writing is to put a little creativity out into the world. I might write someone a note (a just-because note, not a thank-you note that’s been hanging over my head since the holidays), or write down one of my daughter’s favorite made-up bedtime stories so we can read it together, or paint and collage a picture for my son, or hand-paint a card for someone with a birthday coming up. I don’t spend hours upon hours on this, but I do put everything else aside to focus on it for a chunk of time. When I get back to my work, the creativity is usually flowing.
Prompt #20: Start working. Don’t be afraid to tackle something that’s been giving you trouble. If you get stuck, stay with it for a little longer–not to the point of crazy frustration, but a little frustration is good–then take a total break and work on something fun for someone else (not an editor). You choose the activity that suits you but try o stick to creative outlets like painting, drawing, or writing a “just because” note. When you’re done, go back to your own work and see what happens!
Christie Matheson writes. She writes about green living and design (Click here and here to her recent titles). She writes cookbooks (They are drool worthy!! Click here and here to check out two of her titles). She writes about etiquette and manners (Check out her books here and here). Christie is the Every City Editor on StrollerTraffc.com, a witty, fun website for new parents and city moms. And she wrote and illustrated TAP THE MAGIC TREE, which is her first book for children.
To see more of Christie’s work click here.by