Sorting through the boxes and folders of lesson plans, lectures and articles I wrote during my years of teaching creative movement and physical theater, I found my notes for a discussion on ‘creative thinking for creative movers’.
A perfect reminder for the beginning of a new year – for movers and writers. Continue reading →
I liked to make sure my little dog Brandy walked on several different surfaces every day – grass, packed earth, tarmac, mud, gravel… Needless to say, people thought I was nuts but I felt the sensory stimulation would keep him lively and perky. He did live to eighteen!
This exercise, based on the same idea, is a great way to ground yourself before any kind of creative work. I particularly like to do it before sitting down to write or when I’m stuck.
You can use any images, words or ideas that came to you during the exercise in your writing (free write, first draft, insert a new image/idea into something you’re already working on). Or you can simply use it to connect with the ‘now’, to be present with yourself and slip away from your controlling inner editor (or any outer editors for that matter). Continue reading →
A couple of days ago my husband and I were visiting Montreal’s Botanical Gardens with friends from the UK. As the sun went down, it quickly got cold so we took the ‘short cut’ through the greenhouses to warm up with the tropical plants. After a long, very pleasant walk through the greenhouses, we finally came to the last one which was filled with pumpkins decorated by school kids and a witch sitting knitting outside her house.
She was chatting away to herself, and to anyone passing by. Her nose was long and hooked, her voice high pitched, her laugh squeaky and very contagious through the little microphone. She stroked her oversize cat and Continue reading →
A change of environment can often work wonders in helping stimulate new ideas, new inspiration, new ways of seeing oneself and the world. New stories too. Perhaps it’s because a strange place makes one hyper-sensitive to new sights, sounds, impressions… That’s why Continue reading →
Monica (1985) by Jules Lasalle Musée Plein Air de Lachine
There I was, with a first draft I loved, a folder bursting with a massive amount of material I’d developed in search of what that first draft was truly about (none of which felt right), and absolutely no idea how to pull my story together or move it forward.
This was not a new experience for me. It always seems to happen with my favorite stories, the ones I feel really invested in, the ones I know have to be finished.
Unless my first draft is short and gives me a clear idea of where it’s going, my attempts to dig deeper into the story end up with me bushwacking my way through tangled undergrowth with no idea of whether I’m heading north, south, east or west. I have more than a few stories floating unfinished on my laptop’s hard drive (on my brain’s hard drive too). I’m not even talking about a novel here, just stories of maybe 2,500-5,000 words.