Sorry, sorry, I know, I should have been here yesterday, but I don’t seem to be very organised at the moment and it slipped my mind! I’ve had one of those weeks where you run around a lot but don’t actually feel like you’ve achieved anything, and I also took time out to have some fun – you know, “filling the well” stuff!
This was totally necessary because I’m supposed to be writing my next book and the inspiration was sorely lacking. Whenever this happens, I usually do one (or all) of four things – go and meet a friend for something cultural like an art gallery and/or shopping, have a brainstorming session with my writing buddy, read other people’s books, or go to the movies. This week I did all four!
Brainstorming came first, and working with someone else like that is amazingly useful! No matter how much I try and do it by myself, there are always things that another person will see or contribute that I’d never have thought of. And just bouncing ideas off someone else, saying them out loud, I can hear instantly whether they’re going to work or not. Plus, you fire each other up and I went home, wanting to write, which was great.
Photo from RA website
The outing was to the Royal Academy’s Summer Exhibition, always good fun. I find this annual show of all kinds of weird and wonderful artwork fascinating in its diversity, and it’s great fun arguing the merits (or not!) of some of the paintings and sculptures with a friend. Taste is very obviously subjective when it comes to art! But some of it can definitely inspire ideas for writing. This year I fell in love with a bronze frog, but sadly he was a bit out of my price range ...
Reading other people’s novels, as well as fact books, helps enormously. Usually I try to choose a different genre to the one I’m writing myself, so I read a couple of YA books which I really enjoyed.
But my absolute favourite way of filling the well and finding some inspiration is going to the movies. I just love it and frequently get the urge to go and see something, anything, and I don’t mind if I have to go by myself. The huge screen, cosy darkness and the popcorn makes it such a special experience, nothing can beat it for me when it comes to visual entertainment. I don’t mind watching DVD’s at home, but it’s just not the same. When you’re in the cinema it’s as if you’re there, in the movie with the actors, living their lives, feeling their emotions. Some books give me the same effect, but not all, whereas with a film, even if you hate it, you can’t help but get engaged somehow. And if the hero of the film happens to be your favourite actor ... well, I need say no more! I was well and truly inspired :)
Right, now it’s time to do some actual writing methinks ...
Please come back on Sunday to hear from Liz - I think she's been out and about even more than I have!