Ideas, ideas! The ideas are there all of the time, thank goodness. But there are those days, some rainy like today; others actually quite beautiful and bright, when the words just refuse to come out to play. All of us in the writing world know of this condition. It has many names, some of which we can't repeat here. You sit and stare at the computer screen. Then you pick up your favorite pen and pad, or you sharpen the shiny new Number 2 pencil to a fine point...
...and nothing happens.
Luckily for me, I have developed quite a few strategies. Okay, procrastination activities might be more accurate. First, I go outside. Maybe walk around the neighborhood, or take a walk to the grocery store that I usuallly drive to. I may, if the season is right, step over the anti-rabbit fence in my yard to work in my vegetable garden. But the best solution I have found is to give myself up to creating characters in my second-most favorite way: I begin making a cloth doll. Sure, this is time consuming, requires focus, and involves sculpting small cloth heads that look oddly surreal when they're disembodied. But believe me, when the cloth dolls begin to assert their personalities (and they do!), my written characters seem to get a little jealous.
Suddenly, their words and stories resurface, and they are more than willing to take their places on the blank page. Read More