Well, it’s been forever since I’ve posted on this site. Life keeps getting in the way of living and doing things we enjoy, instead of reacting to every little crisis that pops up.
Have been doing some work on book editing for a client, and find that it’s a most enjoyable way to keep the writing-brain well-oiled and functioning. Like so many, I find times when my intention is to only write original masterpieces, but my brain doesn’t want to go there. It’s not “blocked” by any means, because I don’t believe in writer’s block. It simply is out of practice.
Practice! Anyone out there who has studied a musical instrument knows how important daily practice is to keep the muscle memory crisp and quick. Or typists can relate perfectly to that as well. Often I find myself reading something and while I’m reading it, my brain shows my fingers flying on the keyboard. It’s something that comes naturally, as long as we provide the food it needs in the form of practice.
The same holds true for writing. A wonderful Mentor from my MFA program gave a lecture recently about the Pomodoro method of writing. Basic really, but truly a wonderful tool to use on a daily basis to keep the words flowing. Pomodoro, Italian for tomato, came about when a writer noticed a tomato-shaped kitchen timer and decided to use it as his watcher, if you will, giving the writer a specific time period to write each day (one Pomodoro). When that timer rang, one Pomodoro was completed. The object, of course, was to increase the number of Pomodoros completed each day. I recommend it strongly to anyone having difficulty getting those magic words on paper. My recommendation is based on the fact that I started using the method and did really well for some time. Then, I misplaced the timer and assumed I’d do just as well without it. Didn’t happen. I’m back to Pomodoros now and think I’ll just glue that timer to my desk.
So, remember, keep that brain muscle in top shape by practicing every day. Use whatever works best for you. We writers all have our little idiosyncrasies and superstitious practices. I’ll just close this missive with two words . . .