Focusing on being Creative During Stressful times

Hi and welcome back! Of course we are now in the month of April, and for many that means the start of Camp NaNoWriMo. If you are partaking this month in Camp, I wish you and your project the best of luck. I also hope that you and your families are safe and healthy during this time of uncertainty.

Really quick, I just want to let you know that I just finished The Eighth Dwarf, which means that it will be published very soon for Amazon Kindle, and when that goes live I will let you all know.

Now that I finished my plug for my newest work, let’s get on today’s topic, which is about dealing with trying to focus on creativity during stressful times. I got the idea for this post from Kristin Martin. Kristin Martin, for those that are not aware of her, she is an author tube channel that has published works of her own. While there has been some drama centered around some parts of her business model, I still found that her latest video is something that we can all relate to right now.

Giving the current climate that we are in, with having to stay home and only go out when it necessary for essentials. We might find that currently, it is hard to focus on our creative outlets during this time, with the news being all about the virus and us having to stay home. This might be a great time to look at other methods to help get that creative flow going.

This first tip, came directly from her video, which was to write in a journal our thoughts and feelings so that way its out of our heads and onto the page. Think of this as free-writing, in that you just take that pen or pencil to the page and you just write not stopping, unless you give yourself a time limit and you write for that amount of time. This is a perfect time to write about your feeling about being home, or questions that you have about what’s going. It’s just getting the flow of writing out and started. If you feel that you have more to write, then keep writing. It’s your time to focus on what is bothering you.

Another tip, that might help and this also came from her video is to mediate. There are many that say that the practice of meditation can help during times of stress. It help calms and relaxes the nerves. This can also help with any anxiety that you might be feeling during this time. It is also a great help to those that deal with mental illness. My suggestion when it comes to mediation is to mind some relaxing music or listen to either sounds of water running or nature sounds to get you in a place to focus on what you are trying to mediate through. If you have an image that comes to you through out your mediation, then after your mediation session is completed then write all about that image. Now this last part did not come from her video, this is my personal suggestion.

Another great suggestion that I have, and this is one that I’m going to be borrowing from a couple of my past teachers, in that while you write or trying to calm yourself down listen to calming music. Sometimes music within itself and give off images that our minds and sometimes our muses grab onto so tight. This is one of those times when you are strongly encouraged to follow your muse down whatever rabbit hole that he/she might be going down. Remember, the muse is there to help in courage your drive and your determination even in times of chaos.

If you have another way to cope and to keep your creative paths flowing then keep doing what you’re doing. We all get through this one way or another, and for me during this time, the best way that I am coping is to take my fingers to the keyboard and to write. No matter your method, there is no wrong or right way, for you know your methods the best. Trust your methods and your craft will get through this.

I hope that find this post helpful. I hope that you and your families are safe and healthy. Happy Writing! Happy Creating! Until next time I hope that you have a happy writing day!

Let’s talk about Prompts

We all have faced writing prompts at some point in our writing careers/lives, and let me start by saying that they can be a useful tool and sometimes its a great way to get things started when you are stuck on what to write. I’ve used prompts sometimes but for the most part I go off of ideas that have come to my head, which we can also think of as prompts as well. The greatest prompt that I heard yesterday was writing about an old man who is actually God.

This got me to think of all the different possibilities about the story would go to where the man would have to reveal that is not just a mortal man but is actually God. This could go so many different ways, but the question is not just how would I tell the story but how would you tell the story?

That is the great thing about prompts in that we know, or should know, that every writer is different and therefore they can take a prompt in so many different ways. Prompts are tools that can be not only useful but can also be effective. Prompts start out as a simple idea or phrase and if the writer really thinks about it they can make that idea grow. Also if they are really dedicated to that prompt or idea they can stick with it and turn it into a short story, a novella, or even a novel from that simple prompt.

The purpose behind prompts to is engage your mind, but to also make you write without thinking about it. Prompts should make your writing natural and free-flowing. That is what I like about prompts, for they should be used for free writing. When we free write we are not thinking for we are just writing. Granted, some of the weirdest stuff can come from free writing, but also that weird stuff can turn into brilliant, and beautiful stuff.

If you haven’t lately find a prompt and write about if for 20 or 30 minutes. If you like what you wrote keep at it, but if you don’t like what you wrote you can discard, but don’t throw it away. Let your mind think about it, and maybe you will want to redo the exercise with the same prompt or you might improved what you wrote. But keep on writing until you find something that works.

I hope that you have a great day of writing as you find helpful ways to get through your writing!

Natural Writing

Yesturday, I talked about how writing can be magic and today I want to talk about natural writing. Natural writing is where you write without thinking. You think about it as free writing. When you write naturally, you just write while keeping that pen to the paper, or you just type away. It allows you to write continuously. So much of what we write is what we have planned or we think should happen to our characters or story.

But if you write naturally without trying to interfere, then you can get some amazing things to take place in your story. In away you think of this as also as being a pantser, where you are not plotting out what is going to happen. Rather, you let your story go where it might want to go. This can make editing either fun or hard depending on how your writing session goes when you naturally write.

You still might be paying attention to grammer, spelling, and other writing conventions and that is fine. However, you don’t want to think or intereffere as you write naturally. A great way, or tool, to write naturally on is find a writing prompt and just write. Don’t think about it, just write. You will be amazed what free writing can do for you.

If you write naturally and like what you wrote, then you again created magic. Now, I’m not saying that everything that you write might be magic or natural but you should give it a try. So much of today is about thinking, and having to make this perfect or that pefect. But if you don’t have to do that as much, your writing could be looked at as amazing. When that happens then you can say to yourself, “I did something pretty cool today!”

Writing should be natural, magical, amazing and any other word that you can use to describe your writing. But if you can find that then you will love what you write. However, if you make it to be a chore then you are not going to enjoy it as much. The bigger picture is that you should enjoy what you do and you should love what you write. If you can’t do that everyday then you need to ask yourself, “Why did I want this in the first case?” You can also write about that and get some focus or clarity back in your writing, which as writers is what we want. This is more about focusing on as writers and less about our readers. At some point, yes, we need to think about our readers, but for right now we need to think about what makes us as writers happy.

We as writers should be happy, because if we are not happy as writers then we do not want to write, create or even think naturally as writers.

I hope that you have found this helpful in your day as writers.