The one thing that you have that nobody else has is you. Your voice, your mind, your story, your vision. So write and draw and build and play and dance and live only as you can.
At our book club lunch yesterday, I was asked about my next chapter. It’s been suggested that I write more. More…as in, why not write a book? Gulp! That’s a big undertaking, to be sure, and I haven’t yet come up with the next-great-idea.
And now, my two worlds collide. Things I’ve learned:
- If you want to write more, you need to read more. Joining a book club provides clear deadlines on a regular basis. Everyone just knows that writers have to meet many deadlines.
- Read things you wouldn’t normally read. Book clubs are a great way to expose yourself to variety. A writer can learn from both the good and the bad.
- Meeting new people has the added benefit of opportunities to observe new people. It’s a test for a writer’s observational brain.
- Experience books in a whole new way, which opens you up to different explanations and insights you may have missed. Sharing a book with others who have followed a similar solitary journey brings a whole new perspective on the experience.
- Having an insight into how other readers react to story lines, topics and techniques can be enlightening. Seeing what works and what doesn’t is invaluable for learning what invokes strong reactions, both positive and negative.
- Of course it’s fun! Taking the time to enjoy yourself and have some fun with books and other people is reward in itself. Don’t forget that it also helps inspire and recharge your creative juices.
I did remember a dream from last night that could be an interesting story. I’ll start an outline and see if I can make it into more than a 500-word essay. I’ll leave with you this…it involved nudity and dancing, although not at the same time!
As Stephen King said: If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have time to write.