Last week I made a plan to write and I did not stick to it. At least, not the way I’d intended.
Life got in the way again, and I just let it barge right through my carefully carved-out quiet time. Then I spent the rest of the week feeling terrible about not having kept the promise to myself. Well, today, I’ve decided to shorten my post in OBSERVANCE of the writing I must complete.
You will find Silas House’s observations on The Art of Being Still quite apropos for creators of all kinds. Please take a look, if only to press the “reconnect” button within yourself as an artist. The essence of House’s reflection boils down to this:
Stop talking about writing or not writing, and Just Do It already.
More handy takeaways from Silas House’s Opinionator post:
“We must learn how to be still in our heads to achieve the sort of stillness that allows our senses to become heightened.”
“The problem is, too many writers today are afraid to be still [….] I’m not talking about the kind of stillness that involves locking yourself in a room with a laptop, while you wait for the words to come. We writers must learn how to become still in our heads, to achieve the sort of stillness that allows our senses to become heightened.”
“We are a people who are forever moving, who do not have enough hours in the day, but while we are trying our best to be parents and partners, employees and caregivers, we must also remain writers [….] There is no way to learn how to do this except by simply doing it.”
“We must use every moment we can to think about the piece of writing at hand, to see the world through the point of view of our characters, to learn everything we can that serves the writing [….] This way of being must be something that we have to turn off instead of actively turn on. It must be the way we live our lives.”
Yes, yes, yes, and yes! Let’s Get To It Already! The serendipitous moments of accidental discovery only happen when we are NOTICING. And while not all observations end in solutions for our art, each compels us TO PROCESS and to be in the white-hot creative process: to hesitate, listen, wonder, imagine.
Amidst your busy life, what small change can you make to live a more writerly life, as Silas House suggests?
With a full revision of my manuscript due by the end of April, I, for one, will be fiercely protecting my sacred writing time and way of being. I will also be gathering with my critique group on alternating Mondays and Wednesdays just to honor our commitment to writing and stillness.
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