You may be aware, if you’ve been following my posts the last few months, that I’m into set dancing. Earlier in the summer this story of mine appeared in the Ireland-based magazine Set Dancing News. It’s called On a Crowded Floor and it’s about a young man who’s trying to court an Italian girl who doesn’t speak English. You can get it now on Amazon Kindle for just 0.99. It’s amusing, romantic, and since it’s just over 3000 words it won’t keep you up all night.
There is a rhythm to the creative process.
I couldn’t tell you what it is because I still don’t know.
It changes, shifts, like a living thing. Going in some direction I didn’t expect. Most days I’m lucky to be on its heels.
What I do know is practice and study. That’s how I go on producing, almost invisibly, in the midst of living life. Writing line after line in a coffee shop, between poetry scribblers and newspaper readers, blenders churning, milk steaming in the background. Taking words that capture my attention and writing them down: “Yes, after an hour of keeping your hand moving, you will have several pages filled with words; but ultimately, you can’t fool yourself…somewhere along you have to break through.”
I start a routine and it works for about a week, five days, before my schedule shifts and changes yet again but that doesn’t matter. After that week I know more than ever where I’m headed. Breakthroughs happen regardless of change if you keep flexible, keep pushing forward however you may. Writing, creating—it’s not a conveyor belt. It’s a life within a life.
It works inside of and despite everything. This is neat because study, crafting—ideas—happen all the time. While you experience one thing you’re turning it over and learning how it fits into what you’re creating at the moment. It’s important to know this, and also to still work and produce steadily, on any schedule.
Writing is both flexible and inflexible.