At times it can be difficult to invent a new idea; the premise behind it is flawed at its core. So, what can one do when faced with the infamous “Writer’s Block”? Well, each writer has his/her own process and it is best to stay true to that process. If you are accustomed to cracking open a bottle of Merlot, putting on some music, and lighting up before you sit down to create your next masterpiece, then that is precisely what you should do–you may simply end up typing a slew of slurred, jumbled, discombobulated (and yes, I realize that is not an actual word, but it ought to be one) mumbo-jumbo, or you could write the next best-seller in your drunken stupor. Personally, I forgo the wine, music, and tobacco and try to get in as many words as possible when I find a quiet moment; once the kids are in bed, of course. Since I don’t have a specific ritual to stimulate the firing of synapses, and the onset of that sought after euphoria of creative inspiration, I have to improvise. Yes, I have heard that talking about, or in this case blogging about, the creative process is a damning thing, but thankfully I am not a superstitious person.
Some of you may cringe at the idea of simply winging it, but it is just as effective as an elaborate (and costly) ritual. Sometimes it is helpful to go for a walk, fresh air is good for the mind and for the body; other times it is just as helpful to pour a cup of coffee or tea, open up the laptop and start typing–like tonight, my husband and I put the kids to bed, I threw on a load of laundry, and instead of going straight to Facebook and Twitter, I came here to type. I had no clue what I was going to write about, but I knew that I would write. That is how my mind works–randomly. I gleam inspiration from the simplest of things–the frost on a neighbours roof a few months ago inspired me to write a poem, which I subsequently submitted to a competition, that poem is being published in an anthology–yet I find that inspiration can be terribly fleeting, and at times it completely escapes me. There is no cure for that. Henry Miller once wrote “When you cannot create, you can work”, meaning that no matter how pointless it may seem you must sit down, and put pen to paper. Usually, after 30 minutes of staring at the screen, or at the page, and starting sentences, or poems, something clicks; something in your mind begins to form connections that you previously didn’t know existed, and suddenly your fingers are flying accross the keyboard and a story, a poem, a blog post even begins to form, and you are left feeling exposed on the page. That feeling, that fear that comes after writing, wondering if you have shown too much of yourself, it only means one thing; that you have created something beautiful, something new. You have given yourself over and found inspiration, not in a flower petal, or in the orange hues of a sunrise, but in the depths of your mind. Inspiration does not come from external stimulus, it comes from the deepest recesses of your mind; from careful contemplation.