Costume Party

1378226_10152273681319408_1350243675_n[1] (2)I had an amazing invite to a blogger’s conference in Toronto. It was an exciting opportunity to connect with other bloggers, meet new friends, and a thrilling recognition of my work. Due to previous commitments, I had to fly in the day before and fly out the very next night – a whirlwind trip that promised an inspirational 24 hours. I brought with me only one carry-on bag and wore a sleek pinstriped suit I purchased in New York a couple of years back. I paired it with a crisp white blouse, sleek nylons and black heels. I was transformed, and as I headed off to the airport, I felt like a sophisticated world traveller. In that 24 hours, I was a world away from my simple country girl roots.

As I writer, I never have the opportunity to dress up. I spend most of my time in jeans, tank tops, pajama bottoms, robes, shorts, any piece of clothing randomly pulled from my closet. Working from home means I can wear anything I want, and I usually do. I rarely get the chance to dress up. When Billy Joel had trouble writing, he would don a suit, go to a café, order a glass of wine, sit with his notebook and trick himself into being a writer. It was the stimulus he needed to help the words flow. In my elegant suit, with my tablet tucked under my arm, my imagination took flight and instead of sleeping on the plane, I was driven to write – the words just streamed from my fingers. I finished three small projects that seemed to have dried up. I rejuvenated a dormant part of my persona when I stepped out in a new outfit.

Decorate your exterior and unlock a concealed part of your personality – you never know what visions will be unleashed.

 

 

 

Blog Tour: My Writing Process

I am honoured to be asked to write about my process through this blog tour by a young talented writer, Herminia Chow, known to the blogging world as AspiringWriter 22. I am a bit behind in my participation, but here it is. Thank you for asking me to this tour. It’s a delightful way to get to know fellow writers, and experience their creative process. The creative process is a fascinating entity, and I call it an entity because it lives and breathes in itself.

What am I working on?

I work on a number of small projects at the same time; blog posts are written weekly for my arthritis blog (The Old Lady in My Bones), I also contribute guest posts to other arthritis websites and have recently been invited to be a feature blogger for one of those sites (details to come later); short stories and poetry are always in motion. Amid all the small projects, I am working my way through the big one – a novel.

How does my work differ from others of its genre?

Writing is always a very personal event. We all have different experiences and we all approach writing about them in a different way. I write in three different genres – fiction, poetry and creative non-fiction. Each person has their own style, that no one can emulate or copy. It’s through my own experience, style and process of bringing a story to the page that makes my work unique.

Why do I write what I do:

I love writing creative non-fiction. I think it’s important to have readers connect to an experience and that’s what makes creative non-fiction so powerful. In writing about living with arthritis, I connected with many who know exactly what I am talking about. They can identify with the same challenges living with chronic disease. In any non-fiction piece, there will always be people who will be drawn into your story because they’ve had a similar experience. In fiction, I have always been drawn to the darker part of life. It’s a strange juxtaposition. I am very positive, always looking for the blessings in my life, and I do believe a positive outlook will bring positive moments to your life. Maybe because of that, there’s a wicked part of me that enjoys exposing fears and doubts, and really making them bubble on the surface; part of life is being uncomfortable, and if I can stir a memory through one of my own experiences or if I can make a reader experience strong feelings towards one of my characters, I have been successful in communicating to my readers. Poetry is all about imagery. I want readers to smell the dank earth, to cringe from the heat of the sun, to feel relief from cool water, to remember heartbreak or delight from a first love, to feel the sting of a winter chill, to smell the briny air of the Atlantic – I strive to paint pictures with my words and put the reader into that picture.

How Does My Writing Process Work:

It starts with an idea or an image; it gets jotted down in a notebook, recorded into my phone or even photographed in my camera. If the image is strong enough, I can bang out a few opening lines; if it’s not strong, I let it simmer and I wait – it might get used in a current project or I might wait until a stronger storyline evolves. I start with a sentence. It could be the first sentence or the last, but once I write it I let it drive me. I don’t write in order. I write different scenes and then piece them together; sometimes a paragraph in the middle will lead me back to the beginning; sometimes an end will help me fill in the middle. There’s no logic to my method but is any writer’s method logical? We work in an artistic world, and there’s nothing about that world that is logical. Often I let the words lead me. I write when the desire takes hold and unleash as much as I can during that time. The time in-between is harvesting and planting new ideas.

Thank you, Herminia, for inviting me through this tour. Now I will need to work on the other one you invited me to 😉

You can find Herminia’s blog at: http://aspiringwriter22.wordpress.com/

Stop by and share your support. We don’t write alone in this world.