Sometimes inhabiting a fictional world makes me cranky and impatient. Other times, as I am building a fantastical world to share, it makes me joyful and hopeful.
Excuse me, but lately I've been in the cranky and impatient stage.
When I write fiction, I don't pull out the index cards and start plotting until AFTER my characters have started inhabiting the pages. I don't write the complete draft without some outline, but I like to start taking notes and writing to get to know my characters.
Sometimes my characters make me a little cranky because I can't quite figure out how the scenes are to play out. I have an idea in my head and characters to inhabit a storyline, but we haven't all quite figured it out yet.
For months, on this particular story, I have been taking notes, mind mapping, doodling and clutching a pad of paper to catch all my character and plot notes. In the other hand, I am clutching kids forms for school, my 2-year old and other real world reminders. Some days, it gets a little messy. So yesterday, I took a small break from my family (both real and fictional).
I went to the bookstore. I walked amidst the aisles of the books I hope mine will someday inhabit. It felt good to get away and remind myself that reading lives on (even for those without a Kindle) and to remember what it is I hope to accomplish. My crankiness subsided as I returned to my notebook, my research books and my family.
Even when in the throes of creating, sometimes it is restorative to to get out and away from all the projects demanding your attention and just have a quiet experience. Hopefully, it will chase the crankiness away and put you in a good mindset to plop into your writing seat, which is where I am now and feeling joyful again.
Elizabeth King Humphrey is a certified Kaizen-Muse Creativity Coach and freelance writer. She also blogs at www.CoastalCarolinaMoms.com and www.TheWriteElizabeth.com, delving into creativity in everyday places. She appreciates your patience with her cranky start to the week.