Moments of Writing Stillness

Despite all the problems I’ve been having with my story, I’ve found myself over the last few weeks preferring to write my tome rather than do the cyber-posting thing.  Normally, any excuse not to write is a good one, so this has surprised me a little.  However, I’ve gone with it, and my gut instinct seems to have been right.

This is because lately I’ve noticed that I seem to be hitting little spots of ‘stillness’ in my writing.  Sounds like writer’s block, doesn’t it?  Just the opposite is true.

Moments of ‘stillness’ are when you’re so absorbed in your writing that time fades and you hit a run of power and you know there’s some essential truth in what you’re saying.  The emotion is raw but real, your character is alive and making their own decisions, and your heart is breaking every bit as much as your reader’s will be. 

The wierd thing is that usually, I have to work hard for those moments.  I have to set things up, laboriously scrawling word after word trying to get into my groove.  Only after a lot of words and hours of tedium did that moment happen,  when I hit that bit of dialogue that gives me goosebumps, and I think maybe I’m OK at this gig after all. 

But lately, I’ve hit it in a bout of fifteen minutes of writing. 

You read that right – fifteen minutes.  Whenever I find myself putting off writing for days on end, I say to myself ‘I’ll only write for fifteen minutes a day’.  It always works – for some reason whenever I try to up the limit I resist and refuse.  I’d like to say the fifteen minutes becomes longer on most days, but it doesn’t.  Often, I’m watching the clock and forcing myself to remain seated with my pen moving for the full fifteen.  How can inspiration possibly come under such circumstances?

But it does.  And in the last couple of weeks, I’ve found that those moments of stillness I used to have to work hard for can hit within seconds of forcing my pen to start writing.  Maginificent!


4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Charlotte
    Dec 22, 2010 @ 05:34:20

    That’s interesting – almost like training your writing muscles. I hear good things about the fifteen minutes per day approach and I plan to try it myself on my new novel project (the beginning of which I am currently procrastinating over by commenting on this blog…). Hope I get similarly good results!


    • J-A Brocke
      Dec 22, 2010 @ 21:53:13

      Absolutely worth a try, I can recommend it. I find it helps being a planner, though, because you kind of know where you’re heading and don’t need to spend time wondering where it’s all leading first.


  2. janettedalgliesh
    Dec 22, 2010 @ 06:03:22

    Oh, well done you! I have recently experienced a similar dynamic with meditation. Started out being an “I must sit down and do this for fifteen minutes” thing, but recently I’m finding it not only effortless, but something I look forward to. It’s like breaking through a wall of resistance (and pushing through does NOT usually work for me, so this is quite puzzling LOL!)

    Kudos to you for finding that groove!!


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