Archive for August, 2014

Time to write?

I’m hoping so. Unlike a lot of parents, it seems, who fret at sending their little ones to school after the summer, I’m looking around wondering where the bus is and ready to try to take advantage of this to carve out writing time on a regular basis. Because when you don’t have that, it’s easy to get out of the writing habit and hard to get back in.

If you haven’t seen Wes Anderson’s movie The Grand Budapest Hotel, I highly suggest you do, because it’s a) it is a fantastic film and b) it is in part about a writer. The opening of the film contains some observations about writing by the Writer, who is never identified, and who is played by Tom Wilkinson and then by Jude Law (who has a terrific voice for voice-over narration; his voice was probably the best part of Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events, but I digress) at a younger age. Wilkinson’s character notes that people think writers just come up with everything, making up characters and worlds out of thin air, when the truth is that when people find out a writer is writer, they bring the stories to him or her, and if the writer listens, much of the work is done for him.

And I think this is true to a great extent. Most stories, I’ve found from talking with other authors, do not quite appear out of the blue. There is a character based on someone they know, or a situation based on one they experienced, or an edited or adapted version of a story someone told them.

But no matter the story comes to the writer, the writer needs time to write it down, which is hard to come by for those of us with kids and or “real” jobs. Some writers, and I envy them, can sit and write a few pages or even words when they can steal the odd moment. I find that, perhaps because I’m out of the habit of writing, I need more than that. I need time to focus, and the small bits between “Mom, when’s lunch?” and doing the laundry aren’t enough for me.

I admit, as I told my husband, that for a little bit, I’m hoping to have a bit of a vacation when school starts. To relax for a bit, watch a movie or show on demand (True Blood is under consideration, as is Defiance), and to quote Depeche Mode, “enjoy the silence” for a bit.

However, I do want to get back in the habit. I’m not sure what I’ll work on, as I’m torn between new material and revamping older stories, but perhaps there will be time for both.

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