“Wombifest”

There’s a great article in the Nov. 2012 issue of EXPERIENCE L!FE magazine.  Maternity lifestyle expert Latham Thomas was interviewed about how women can get the most out of their pregnancy.  Check out Mama Glow, which features her new book with the same name.

As a writer, what I found most interesting was her comparison  of babies to ideas and how we, in a sense, give birth to them.  She likens the creative process to “wombifesting.”

LT– “It’s focusing on the womb, the place in the body that’s connected with everything we create, and understanding that everything is born from darkness…The energy here is always fluid and flowing; all you have to do is show up and lend yourself to the process…Womb-ifestation happens inside of you and then moves out into the world. The growth is not necessarily witnessed by others.”

Continuing with the brain paintings, here is my interpretation of this concept.

Calligraphy Ink on Mixed Media Paper

I call it: Incubation.  I feel a little like Victor in Frankenstein when I say that 😉  The interesting part about the process is that I used chopsticks with calligraphy ink to create this piece.  As you probably guessed, ink is quite permanent and chopsticks are not very precise.  It was very scary because I knew there wasn’t much I could do if I made a mistake.  At the same time, it was liberating to just create without relying too much on a given outcome.  What would be would be.  And that is at the heart of incubating an idea.  ❤

The Simplest Cure

Have you ever had one of those days when your writing goes terribly wrong?  You might have spent hours typing away at the computer only to find that your main character is whiny, cliché, or worst of all…boring.  What should you do?  Before you burn your manuscript and take another day job, pause for a moment.  I think we all know the solution on some level, but it is so easy to forget.  See if you can answer this question correctly.  When we have trouble with our writing we should:

a) consult a style manual

b) consult a shrink

c) read another novel in the hopes of soaking up some of its greatness

d) rehash the novel with a friend

Technically, any of these answers could apply or none of them.  But I just realized, to my surprise and delight, that the best therapy for a bad day of writing is actually more writing.  Try it!  I dare you…

Life: The Great Experiment

My friend emailed me this great blog post about people who essentially rearranged their lives to follow their passions.  I guess everyone is doing it.  Who knew?  There is one quote by writer Stephanie Wetzel that really struck me.

She said, “That’s the thing about changing. You can’t just set your sights and put your head down while you move forward. Opportunity shows up all along the way, you’ve got to keep the right perspective or you might miss it!”

What a wake up call for me.  It isn’t enough to just start on a new path, fumbling in the dark, grasping wildly, hoping for the best and still expecting the worst.  Not if you realize you’ve had your eyes closed the entire time.  Forge ahead proudly!  Yes, be willing to learn and grow.  But plant many seeds.  Try EVERYTHING.  You never know where your next great experiment might lead.

Why Is Revision so Hard?

Check out this enlightening guest post on Fiction Notes by Carrie A. Pearson, author of A Warm Winter Tail

Why is revision so hard?  She says it’s because it “disturbs our emotional core.”

How can we get around that?  We basically have to reframe our brains!  Imagine that.  So say it with me:  My writing isn’t wrong.  I’m not wrong.  But in the end, I must do what is best for the piece.  Dig deeper!  Find the gem and trust that you will feel it when you see it on paper.

How to Embrace “Failure”

I came across a wonderful quote just in the moment I needed it most (after a critique).  The question on my mind is: How do you know when you’ve got it right?

“He is able who thinks he is able.” –Buddha

Go forth with that wisdom and I promise you will move mountains, mostly because you put the mountains there yourself.

It’s a Great Day to Give Away!

Want to win a free copy of the 2013 Children’s Writer’s and Illustrator’s Market?

Me too!  Click here for details.  I have the 2012 edition, which I find indispensable.