“One is distracted by this notion that there is such a thing as inspiration, that it comes fast and easy. And some people are graced by that style. I’m not. So I have to work as hard as any stiff, to come up with my payload.” ―Leonard Cohen
Because most of you – at present – who frequent my site are also blogging, I thought it might be a good idea to share one of my inventions or techniques for keeping the pen flowing so to speak and naturally coming up with fresh ideas to share and write about.
Click on the media player above for an intro and spoken rendition of this week’s blog, or click here to download it in mp3. This is the first of a series of talks on creative writing, so how they come into form largely depends on the sort of feedback you provide.
Here’s a technique to help boost creative writing: Reflect upon a recent conversation you had with someone. Now pretend you can overhear that person share their opinion of you with a friend. Whether his/her remarks are negative or positive need not matter at this stage. Just go with the flow, write the way you feel, or be wildly imaginative!
How about a scenario to demonstrate:
Let us say that you get stuck in an elevator with someone you don’t know. The other person appears frustrated and somewhat fearful. She claims that small spaces make it difficult to breathe. Beads of sweat appear on her forehead. Her knuckles turn white as she grips the side rail. Assessing the situation with circumspection, you decide to calm her by asking questions.
You ask if she has claustrophobia. She answers with an emphatic yes. What does that feel like? She gives you an ear full. What are the symptoms that most people experience with this condition? In turn she lists off about a dozen things that are typical to this kind of anxiety disorder. Then you bid her to recall what others do to treat such a state.
As she recites a number of ways to remedy her situation she decides to apply one of them. Meanwhile you read aloud the manual for what to do in case the elevator gets stuck. Within minutes you are speaking with an emergency responder and help is on its way.
Later on you are at home writing about the ordeal. You imagine her telling her friend how kind and practical you were while under pressure. She might also state some of the things that you could have done instead, which may open your mind to additional ways to better deal with similar situations in the future.
Be mindful that there are no givens that this introspective writing approach will make you more effective in real life situations, but it can provide extra ink for your pen so to speak, thus replenish your imagination with scenarios to create and write about.
Love & light,