Win NaNoWriMo Part 2 of 4: Special Space
When I first visited artist retreats like Hedgebrook, Yaddo and Djerassi, I thought bright ideas would flow like Niagara Falls. But time was needed to recognize; then quiet my workaday mental buzzes. Thoughts about tasks and chores kept swarming, distracting me and blocking visions of my story.
Modern life can be so busy that settling daily demands down for hive naps takes time. A special place can help, a space that may be a card table or a corner at the library or a café, anywhere that signals:
- My “Time Out for Imagination”
- Admittance Restricted to My Muse
- Shop Opens for Busy-ness in One Hour or so
In Ray Bradbury’s book Zen in the Art of Writing, he wrote: Find a character, like yourself, who will want something or not want something with all his heart. Give him running orders. Shoot him off. Then follow as fast as you can go.
Following characters through the “Time Out for Imagination” space requires focus. Phone calls, doorbells and folks wondering, “What’s for dinner?” can throw us off the trail. While in your “Time Out for Imagination” space, let the answering machine take calls. Tell family members that interruptions will result in no dessert or other goodies (unless there’s a significant emergency). Advise friends to schedule visits. Otherwise, the door will not be answered. Start heating a casserole.
Crowded cafes and forest paths, giant headphones blasting heavy metal or a library corner are great spaces for solitude, the only place where your story can appear because inspiration is more delicate than a wisp of cloud. A single word can dissolve a vision and the fictive dream is lost.
Where is your special “Time Out for Imagination” space?