Wednesday, April 3, 2013

"C" is for Creativity...

Today's post is a "two-fer"; as part of the A to Z blog challenge, it begins with the letter "C." As part of the Insecure Writer's Group, it addresses a common concern/fear amongst us mere mortals: creativity and the lack there of.

If you've been following, you know that Monday I blogged about abundance - the abundance of ideas flowing from my head. And you also read about my fear that I would lose some of those thoughts, thus a need to catch the ideas in some way, shape or form. You may also remember my "BOLA" post from March 20th ... a humorous and honest post about my need to write it down NOW.

Creativity is a funny thing - dancing in and out of life when we least expect it, most need it and can't find it. We've all had days where we've stared at a blank sheet of paper or a stark, white screen on the computer and the little pointer blinks. And blinks. And blinks. And nothing comes to us. And we've had those days were our fingers can't possibly keep up with the flow of words trying to make their way from our brains to whatever mechanism we use for capture. The problem is, there's no way to predict or identify what sort of day we'll have.

It's not like the weather (which, by the way, I wouldn't mind having a job where I got paid for a 60% accuracy rate) - we can't forecast "good" or "bad" writing days. They just happen, and we have to cope with them.

I've had stories hit me like a lightening strike while walking the dog. My first novel came to me over Christmas and was complete (first draft, anyways) in a little over two weeks. And I've had ideas for stories that I don't even seem able to begin, even though I captured the premise on a sticky-note and stare at it daily. Then there are the days where you know where the story needs to go, but the only thing you manage to write is a string of periods. Not even ellipses! Just period, after period, after period.

That's where I'm at with my latest WIP. I'm probably two or three chapters from finishing, and I can't seem to get it done. I sit at the computer and review the preceding chapter or two. I play at editing the front end. I tweet, facebook, blog and surf. And it's still waiting for me. The main characters hang suspended, frozen in time in awkward positions, waiting for me to tell them what happens next. And I tweet. Surf. Facebook.

I shouldn't be surprised - the WIP began with me typing "what if" over and over on a clean sheet of electronic paper. Apparently, creativity has chosen this moment to go on her own vacation, leaving me high and dry. All I can do is keep trying. Keep sitting in front of the computer each evening, drinking Glenlivet and hoping she'll come back to me, or the Scotch will kick in. Of course, with Glen keeping me company, I'm not sure how much I miss that muse!

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