|Red Tide at Amazon|
Peg Brantley, author of debut novel Red Tide, is this week's guest. Red Tide is available in both print and eBook.
I have shelves full of books on craft. I admit that although they’ve all been perused, there are only a few that have been read and marked up. I have a few favorites, but today I want to talk about one in particular.
There’s not one thing in it that has to do with POV or plot or character development or anything that we work on to improve every time we sit down to write. And even more, I want to drill down to just one takeaway from this book that doesn’t mention our craft but has everything to do with it.
The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron should be required reading for every writer. I bought this book years ago, long before I became serious about creating a piece of entertainment that only uses words. It set on my shelf for a very long time until apparently, the time was right for me to crack it open and go to work.
My biggest takeaway from my first time through TAW has been the concept of morning pages. Three full pages of stream-of-consciousness longhand writing. This simple little habit helps me deal with my Lizard Brain (thank you, Seth Godin) or whatever you want to call your inner Censor. For a while, I called mine Snake. It’s the little voice that resides inside my head and tells me I can’t spell, or find the right word or… do this.
What you write doesn’t matter, just that you write. You can write about the things you need to do that day or the things you did yesterday. Not every day of morning pages will give you fantastic insight, but I promise you, done faithfully, they will.
One of the most useful things my morning pages have evolved into is that of a personal brainstorming session. The stream-of-consciousness process allows me to explore plot or character issues freely. I’ve morning-paged myself into more than one perfect place.
In fact, I brainstormed what might be useful to readers of this blog and voila… here it is. I hope you’re encouraged to give this idea a try… and maybe even to get your hands on a copy of The Artist’s Way and gift yourself with the insight and strengths if will help you find.
About Peg Brantley
native, Peg Brantley is a member of Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers and Sisters
in Crime. She and her husband make their home southeast of Denver, and have
shared it with the occasional pair of mallard ducks and their babies, snapping
turtles, peacocks, assorted other birds, foxes, a deer named Cedric and a
bichon named McKenzie. Red Tide is Peg's first novel. Her second will be
released in late 2012. She's on Facebook and Twitter with her real name as the
handle, PegBrantley. Blog: Suspensenovelist.blogspot.com Colorado