Making the To-Do List Count
Life lately, at the WLT office and personally, has seemed to consist of never ending to do lists. Do you ever feel that way? Hardly able to keep your head above water, just able to get absolute needs accomplished? Rest, exercise, and writing seem to go out the window. Ironically to a writer, they should be top priority (or at least for this poet.)
This week make your to do list count, and allow all the tedious chores to bring creativity. Some writers, and artists, say that there best inspiration comes from doing daily mundane activities, like washing their car or showering or doing the dishes.
For example, I need to clean out that junk drawer that has been haunting me for a month. I also need to hand wash a new set of dishes. So how can I make this spur on my creative process? First of all, doing something that has been looming over you will free a space in your mind. It will silence that voice that keeps reminding you, as you write mid sentence, that you need to ‘clean the damn junk drawer!‘
Secondly, what if you thought like a writer/artist/creator as you did this chore? What if you really paid attention to what was collected in the junk drawer? Is their some sort of strange logic, is there a surplus of something? All these details could lead to a character development, an idea for a new short story, a gripping image for a poem. Use sensory detail to your advantage. Clear your mind, and allow something new to inspire you.
You may have never discovered the character that has a strange obsession with keeping soy sauce packets, because they remind him of the father that abandoned him weeks after the family dinner at the local Chinese food joint. Or the detail of soap suds crawling up your fore arm as you washed new saucers, may have never made it’s way into the elegiac poem.
Remember writers: God is in the details.