Monthly Archives: December 2014

Seasonal Sabbatical

It’s been an exciting few months for me, as I find myself finally living the dream that I’ve been working torwards for a long time. I blogged about the details in September and the title of that blog says it all: I’m Present.

So this Christmas, I’m taking some time out to truly be present with my friends and family, and also with myself. In January this year, I said the only ‘resolution’ I’d be making was a promise to be kinder to myself. I still have my moments but I think I can safely say I’ve fulfilled that promise…. and so much more! It’s been a good year.

If 2014 hasn’t been the greatest year for you*, well – there’s still time! And all things pass so imagine how different things will be this time next year when you’re looking back at now…

Whatever you’re doing for the holiday season, I wish you love, peace and lots of laughter!

Christmas cocktails

 

*If the season really gets you down, there are people you can call, and you could always tweet or email me too – it might take a couple of days but I’ll be listening, and I will reply.

 

Where do you write?

Most of my writing is done well before pen touches paper or fingers touch keypad. I write…

In the shower

While cooking

While running or swimming

Underwater. One of my favorite places to create.

As I fall asleep

As I wake up

While I sleep!

And that’s just the start of a very long list as more keeping popping into my head now as I type…

My point is; the crafting of any piece is writing is rarely done sitting at my desk. For the most part, by the time I actually sit down at my desk or open my notebook, the first draft is already written. The desk is where I edit – it’s where the work gets done.

Where do you write?

Christmas tree

Dark green plastic
Looks nothing like the real thing
The spaces between leaves are too wide
It feels wrong
It doesn’t smell like Christmas
But
He is mesmorised
“Is it Christmas time now Mummy?”
Slowly, he picks up a red bauble. Places it carefully on the tree
“I do the low ones. You do the high ones, ok?”
He picks up a tiny gold star
“We need a big one”
I show him a giant star covered in too much glitter
His eyes widen “Twinkly!” he says, smiling
Returns to the important work
Of dressing the tree
He steps back to admire his work and I turn on the lights
His eyes light up.

Dressing the Christmas tree

 

Writers write, right..?

Source: freedigitalphotos.net

Image source: freedigitalphotos.net

Last month I posted a question over on Facebook, asking fellow writers when/whether they felt comfortable calling themselves writers. The responses were revealing…

My self-confident side says I can call myself a writer as I fulfill the only necessary criteria which is… that I write. However, as I am not paid to write, my insecure side says I shouldn’t REALLY call myself a writer because real writers get paid
Maddy, Writing Bubble

“It wasn’t until I had a book published and gave up the day job to write everyday that I felt like a writer.
Amy Beeson, Wordsby Commuications

I call myself a writer, but only very quietly when people are not really listening.
Judith Kingston, judithkingston.wordpress.com

The reason I asked this is because although on some level I’ve always known I was a writer, I never referred to myself as such until I was getting paid to do so. Bizarrely, I did refer to myself as a poet once I’d had some poems published and was regularly performing at spoken word events… But not a writer. Now that just doesn’t make any sense.

One of the reasons I held back from calling myself a writer for so long was because I kept hearing that “writers write every day.” I have boxes full of notebooks that go back years but I have never written every day. In fact, I’ve often gone long periods when I’ve written very little at all.

I have never written every day

Those who claim the need to write every day explain that the more you write, the more you write and that we need to practise our art. I agree on both counts. However, I don’t believe that taking a break is a bad thing. Everyone is different and for me personally, writing every day becomes a chore. I need those times in between to recharge my creative batteries by doing something else… And often find that this ‘downtime’ fuels my creativity and allows seeds of thought to develop so that I return refreshed and bursting with creative energy and ideas.

Writing is not just (sometimes not even) what I do. It’s who I am

I know I’ve always been a writer. There were times I didn’t allow myself to believe it because I spent too much time listening to other people’s ideas of what that should look like. But I know myself better now and I know that this is who I am. It’s as much a part of me as my brown skin, my curly hair and the birthmark in my eye. I can’t change it and wouldn’t want to. No matter what life throws at me, whether I get paid for it or not and even if I never write another word (highly unlikely!) , I am – and always will be – a writer.

Are you a writer? Is is as much a part of your identity as it is mine? Or is it just something you do…? Please do comment in the box below, or even join the conversation on Facebook. I’d love to hear from you!