What kind of writer are you? Do you get your ideas while spinning on a roller-coaster with a mountain goat, a possessive horse with a paddle-pop float, or riding a galloping one-legged Ninja (motorbike wheelies), chasing an elephant in the afternoon, inside a torrid dream of spooning, (not with the elephant!) mid-Mother-yes-I’ll wear a jumper-conversation or in the little room at the railway station? (You know which room I mean and I hope you’re not doing any of the other things at the same time!) Does inspiration strike at the most inopportune time or with pen, laptop or guitar in hand?
Ideas flourish and swirl through my mind at almost all times and don’t leave me alone until…I sit down to write. That magnificent river of words turns into a muddy puddle. While ill, full symphonies entertain me, hit songs with every rhyming word a revelation, until I recover enough to write. A fever sweeps me to a land of mystery: of fantastic tales of superhero dragon-tails, though when I cool the stories freeze. When I pick up a guitar, the melodies rush like a polyphonous stampede, but the la la las just don’t work for me.
Do you go into writing trance? Walk around like the Living Dead, while thoughts alive, thrive in your head? Do you bump into the furniture or stand at the open fridge door mesmerised; tranquillised and wondering why you’re there? Or is your brain civilised, patient and well trained, restrained until you are available to unleash its creativity? If you have found your treasured writer’s sanctuary, I couldn’t be more pleased. Whether your character’s Jack Bauer or you’ve lost your Sense and Sensibility, setting is key.
Here are two writers and their possibilities. One of them might be you; both of them might be me!
CHRIS dragged the laptop onto her bed. She knew pain would likely attend.
‘I have to hush the voices.’
They pestered her sleep, eats, showers, speech; unrestrained. She longed for a lull, or to leave the bed, but the body disagreed. Ofttimes solitude’s blessing was drowned by the clatter inside her head.
‘If I can release the words, maybe I’ll be free’.
Java-scented cafes appeased Sam; the 98-decibel-battle of street-noise, dish-clang, busker-beat, and entangled chatter’s reverberation. Home mirrored her discontent. She needed the boisterous city-proud din, the more chaotic the better. It was here the words poured.