Friday, October 9, 2015

Platform 9 3/4

9th October 2015

I often read and watch interviews with other writers, and one question that is always asked, and which readers (including myself) seem to want to know is: what does your day as a writer look like? The vast majority of writers seem to spend their days very much like I do. So, here's how it goes:
I think, like other creative people, my mind does not switch off so easily, so my nights tend to be a bit of a struggle just trying to get enough zzz's that my mind functions at all. On the other hand, a fuzzy brain doesn't have so far to go to reach a state of "dreamy" which is often a good place to be when composing. It's a bad place for editing, but not for actually going into "the zone."

                                                 Robert Graham

My creative window is open in the morning (by the time 2 o'clock comes around, I'm heading back into sleepy zone and need a nap.)  As Thoreau says, "All poets and heroes...are the children of Aurora and emit their music at sunrise." So, the sooner I can get in front of my computer the better. But first I need my cup of tea! I need this like a nictotine-addict needs an early morning smoke. Pathetic, I know, but we all have our little things. It comes from having grown up in freezing Scottish houses and needing to get your hands around a warm cup. These days I live in Colorado, and, even in the hot summers, I still love that feel of a cup of tea. It's a ritual, too, a little portal that I walk through from night into day.
And then I turn to work, but first there's one more thing:  I've heard actors talk about seemingly meaningless rituals they go through before they walk out on stage: little rhymes or a series of gestures. And I have the same. It's calling in the muse, I suppose: walking around your office, picking things off your desk, getting into a sort of sideways mode so that you can take a run --like Harry Potter on platform 9 3/4, waiting for the right moment to run through the wall.

And then you're lost in the zone and a few hours have disappeared down the black hole before you look up and it's time to walk the dogs. Time to step back off the platform as life crowds back in and the muse scurries off back to wherever she came from. 

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