Sometimes when I get stuck with my writing I doodle. Often those doodles are associated with scenes from my story and most of the time the pictures that develop from the doodles are associated with my main novel, titled The Green Book for now.
In the past few weeks I’m happy to say that writing for said book has been going well. Recently I wrote over 4,000 words over the course of three days and for the business of my life recently this is fantastic. Since then it’s been a steady average of 8oo words per day and not all of those were written by pure inspiration. On a good day a cloud of inspiration settles around me, dampening out the rest of the world and fueling me with chronological ideas whether I’m eating, writing, biking, walking around the park, or cooking. Often this metaphorical cloud sticks around for a few days before drifting off but even then parts of it still cling to me. When the cloud has dissipated I can still write for hours and not realize that most of the day has gone by and I have yet to shower. Don’t stick out your tongue. You’ve done it with some task too. On off days I plan out time to write. For example after I put in a load of laundry I fill my large water bottle and sit down at the table where I can here the machine cycles and write. On these days I do not have any particular inspiration but keeping the characters going help me to assess if I’m keeping them in sync with their personalities where as with the inspirational writing I may misplace a dialogue in an effort to get everything down. I believe great writing comes out of both of these situations. It’s like being in a good relationship: while the spontaneous adventures are fun sometimes you can find an adventure you never imagined in a planned event.
The picture featured below is of a scene yet to come in The Green Book. As it is these two characters are still at odds with each over as a result of a misunderstanding that spans many years in their younger lives, and extends generations into their family histories. A lot of the pictures that come out of this story have a storybook feel in my head and I like using textures that make it look like the aged pages of a well worn, much loved book. Who knows, maybe I will publish the illustrations inside the book when it is ready.
Advice for the week: warm up your hand before you start writing, or both hands before a long bout of typing. Grab a tennis ball or racquet ball and squeeze it, or open and close your hands, but do not clench too hard. The goal is to warm up the muscles, not strain them. Straining comes later! I’m kidding.