A new season, a new attitude, I always say. Time to slough off the heavy winter coat and dive into something brighter!
Here’s some ideas:
Are you keeping track of other ideas while you work on bigger projects, like a novel? A phase, a character or plot idea, some piece of inspiring music or a painting, say–anything that doesn’t seem to fit in the current project. If you keep an idea file of these passing concepts, why not dust one off, just to exercise a new or latent muscle? Perhaps a quick poem or flash fiction or even a short story, if you need a longer break. Drafts don’t take long and may refresh your approach to the longer project. You can always polish later, or maybe you’ll be inspired to send a piece or two out to lit mags. It’s like trying on a new pair of shoes or a flowing spring scarf. Or maybe picking up a new tool to fool around with.
I need a retreat! Now is the time to plan for the summer or fall, to spend time in the company of other writers and maybe make a new contact or two. I’m a pretty reclusive writer, but I always learn something from meeting new people, even more from returning to a retreat and writing friends that have nourished me in the past. Janes Stories generally does a late summer retreat in the Chicago area, and I cannot recommend enough Connie May Fowler’s retreat, formerly in Florida, this year in Yucatan. Look them up on the net, or just type in “writing retreat” and see what else is on offer. (Or check out lists kept by Poets & Writers, and many other sites.)
If none of these sound enticing, how about picking a new internet cafe to haunt, or simply a new routine, such as walking before writing. (Spring’s inspirations are everywhere!) Maybe give an ear to local writers at an area open mic? Or make a new reading list, one that might nourish your own writing.
The point is, break the old routine, try something new, get fresh eyes and minds for our work. Happy Spring and joyous writing to you!