Write With Me Study Hall, Monday, November 16, 2015

  
When momentous events toss us like so many dice in a cup, it can be hard to get our focus in order to write. One tool for such times is meditation. 

Perhaps you’ve tried meditation before, and found it frustrating to concentrate, or perhaps for other reasons you think it is not for you.

I encourage you to broaden your definition of meditation in order to find a form that works for you. We writers are only human, and emotions, whether brought about by personal or societal circumstances, may leave us feeling too drained to face our task of bringing stories to light. Whatever brings clarity of purpose and thought to the page can be a form of meditation, from a head-clearing walk to a familiar routine that helps us shut out the world. 

Consider: There used to be nothing more satisfying to me than putting a fresh sheet of paper into the typewriter and snapping the paper guide into place. That sound, that motion, that empty sheet glistening before me, meant “ready for anything!” Today, I don’t get quite the same sense of adventure from an empty screen glimmering ahead, so I have to create other forms of “ready for launch” excitement. I do it visually, by sitting quietly and carefully emptying my thoughts of the day’s tasks and errands, sometimes imagining a giant eraser swiping away my cares to reveal a huge, limitless space in my frontal lobe. Ready! 

However you shut out other concerns, remember that we are not retreating from the world when we write; we are instead bringing sense and order to it. Writers are among the most fortunate creatures: time, events, even gravity cannot forestall us as we build our imaginary worlds. Do not let the real world weigh you down. Instead, make it pause for an incandescent moment to hear a message from YOU, the sponsor of a better world.  

As always, please let us know what you’re working on today in the comment section, below. 

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6 Comments

  1. Bobbi/Bobbie

     /  November 16, 2015

    Sorry to miss another week, but expect to have new system ready by end of this week, and then spend much of the weekend actually writing.
    Today I’ll be testing software for writers–trying to decide between WriteItNow and WriteWay Pro. I’m tempted by the organizational possibilities of the two. I got lots of advice from my facebook request, and ended up getting MS Word, but still looking for suggestions from writers who’ve used either or both or other specialized WP software.

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  2. Bobbi/Bobbie

     /  November 16, 2015

    Wanted to respond to your post, too. Remember Tom Lehr’s song, “They’re rioting in Africa”? I’m trying to avoid not liking anybody very much. Just spent an hour on facebook “liking” a bunch of pro-Paris and similar posts, feeling helpless and hopeless, trying to avoid commenting on controversies I’m not well-schooled in, wondering whether to undo my temporary French-flag-imposed over my facebook photo since the gesture doesn’t also honor Beirut et al…
    I guess I’ll take a break with another cup of tea and watch “General Hospital”.

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  3. I’ve had the same concerns, Bobbie. I think we’re all rattled and disoriented. I’ve been searching for ways of honoring Beirut and I’m sure I’ll find something more eventually. Notice I posted a couple of stories about that, because, truly, I missed it at first and I figured some of my friends did, too. But I hate to see us discount any grief because others aren’t getting the same exposure. Paris is one of the premiere cities of the world, an international treasure, and I think those of us who love the city are truly heartbroken to see it targeted in such a way. That doesn’t mean that I think French people are any more valuable than Lebanese or anyone else.

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