Welcome to my regular feature called "When In Doubt I Turn To...
Today I would like to welcome Cressida McLaughlin, one of the most talented authors and one of the loveliest people.
Cressida's books always bring me so much reading happiness! The way she creates her stories and characters is remarkable, and I've had the pleasure of reading all her books up to date.
The paperback of The Once in a Blue Moon Guesthouse series is set to be release in next week, and I have a review for you as a part of the blog tour that will start on Monday ( June 26th) in the mean time I have a fantastically inspiring guest post by Cressida McLaughlin. Enjoy it!
When in doubt I turn to . . . by Cressida McLaughlin
Gazing out of the window, which sounds a bit half-hearted, but sometimes just turning away from the computer screen or page is enough to kick my brain into gear. If I get stuck on the next sentence, or something isn’t working but I don’t want to break the flow completely, then changing my view for a few minutes can be helpful.
If I need a longer distraction, then I go and make a cup of tea. Tea can improve any situation, and I don’t need to think about making it, so my ideas can percolate away in the background while the kettle boils.
When the page is my enemy, nothing seems to be working and my writing is flowing like a dry riverbed, then I go for a walk or jog (plod), or sometimes do some cooking. I’m not brilliant at it, and there are only a few things I can make well, but it’s fun and cathartic, and leaves my brain with enough space to mull over why the scene or character isn’t doing what I want it to. And at the end, I not only have a solution to my writing problem, but a tasty Bolognese or pasta bake to eat too.
The size of the problem dictates the size of the distraction – whether it’s a few seconds, minutes or hours. This post is very apt for me as I’m just starting my second week as a full time writer, instead of cramming everything writerly in around four day-job days each week. Now I have hours and hours stretching out in front of me. It’s the stuff of dreams, but it’s also intimidating to a certain extent.
But already I’m finding a rhythm; I know my brain is better in the mornings, so I can have 4 or 5,000 words done by lunchtime, and then use the afternoons for reading, social media or writing other things, like this. Every writer finds their own groove, depending on their circumstances, and part of that is their solution for writer’s block, word quagmires and misbehaving characters.
One thing I have quickly discovered is not a good way of clearing my mind, but is something I turn to far too frequently, is Twitter. “Oh, I’ll just have a browse, look at my notifications…” Forty-five minutes later I’ve achieved nothing except liking a few kitten GIFs, and my knotty problem is in exactly the same tangle as it was before.
So the conclusion I have come to is that tea is good, Twitter is bad. I might put that on a post-it note and stick it to my computer, as a reminder.
Pre-order The Once in a Blue Moon Guesthouse here
A huge thank you to Cressida McLaughlin! xo
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