Monday, June 13, 2011

How Not To Write, Or Do Anything Else That Requires Concentration

As I mentioned last week, I have some personal business that has to be taken care of this week, so I am seriously considering making this my one and only post for the week.

Long title, eh?

The changing of the seasonal weather from cold spring-winter type days to warm springish summer days usually means for me a refreshing change of scenery and a new attitude.

Gone are the long cabin fever type of days in which my writing goes to pot as I struggle to string coherent sentences, paragraphs and plot structure in a linear and chronologically satisfying manner. In their place are the coherent sentences, paragraphs and plot structures that are created when one's butt is transplanted outside and begins to absorb Mother Nature in all of its wondrous glory.

Translation: Inspiration is fed from that big mound of dirt that this blog is named after.

However, that big old mound of dirt and rock has added an unnecessary swerve to me trying to accomplish anything of note.

Think I'm kidding?

Well, to quote Fire Marshal Bill, "Let me tell you something!"

Tell me if this hasn't happened to you.

It's a fantastic late spring/early summer day, and your intention is to get a little writing (or anything else for that matter) done in between bouts of relaxation. So you gather up all of your implements of destruction, which in my case are paper, pen, clipboard and a copy of my latest project, and step outside.

You walk over to your favorite spot, which for me is my driveway, and set up shop. To your right, the big old mound of dirt with various sound emitting from it. Behind you, wind chimes and other assorted noise. In front of you, all kinds of birds piggin' out on three feeders and a birdbath.

You begin to refresh your memory by reading what you've already wrote. You begin to relax as your environment slowly weaves its magic into your very soul.

Suddenly a noise snaps you back to alertness. You take out your cell phone to check the time and discover that you'd just spent that past hour or so not writing, but inspecting your eyelids.

That's right boys and girls, you were spending your time frivolously pursuing whatever memory your brain decided to explore.

And not, repeat, not doing what you'd originally set out to do.

In fact, you managed to do this not once, not twice, not even three times, but four time over two consecutive weekends. Whatever contact you were having with Mother Nature, Father Nature, Doctor Dolittle, Grizzly Adams, or Euell Gibbons was causing you not to be inspired with your creativity.

No sir (or ma'am), it was causing you to become one with Norman Rockwell's America.

You know: a hammock, a warm day, a cool breeze. The three things that combined causes the deadliest thing know to man, woman or teenager....



  1. Your driveway is where you set up shop? Hum. The kind of days you describe are conducive to me to having a nap. Thus no writing.

  2. I think a wee nap is good for the soul. I found myself doing that some this weekend, too.

  3. Dreaming is a valid part of the creative process. Call it an accomplishment and pat yourself on the back. ;-)

  4. Charles: Yeah. Where I sit in my driveway, I have a good view of the neighborhood, the mountain, the birds (my bird feeders are in the front) and I'm in the shade until about 4 in the afternoon. If I'm still awake and alert, I'll move to the side of the house where the shade is better and there's a old couch to relax in.

    Lynn: As a general rule, yes. But when you're trying to do a little writing, falling asleep in mid-sentence is not a good thing. :D

    S.R.: Yup, dreaming is part of the creative process. Except it would be nice if I'd remember what it was I was dreaming. :D

  5. Yep, I've been there too. But I don't fight naps ;)

  6. R: The only time I really fight naps is if they're related to my diabetes.

    Sometimes when my sugars spike, one of the unpleasant side effects is that I fall asleep.

    Very bad to do at work. Or driving. But especially at work.

  7. Mama Z: Yup. Most any time of day, especially if you want a little escape from reality.

  8. To rest, recharge and rejuvenate - that is what naps were made for. I think it's a great aid in allowing the mind to totally relax and cook up all sorts of new writing ideas, G :)


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