Thursday, June 21, 2012

I'm going on a writing fast.

I've been sitting without writing anything new for almost two months now. It's not that I don't want to write. It's just that the drive isn't there. So... instead of feeling bad about this, I decided to go on a writing fast.

Which I guess is good, since I'm supposed to be in the edit mode while I finish up Doorways.

Still, I can't just sit down and laze around in front of the TV. Or I could, but I don't want to.

This obsessive-scribbling-free time can be spent on refueling my creative tanks. And boy am I.

I spent about a quarter of my salary to buy canvasses, paints, papers, charcoal, erasers, brushes etc. to rekindle another love that I've left to stagnate when I was at university. Painting and drawing.


And you know, rather than itching to write, I'm itching to paint. Sadly it will have to wait. I (in a moment of passion and stupidity) bought oil paints. WONDERFUL on canvas. TERRIBLE on drying time. And I only have five weeks until we have to move. Five winter weeks. In the Cape. Where it's humid.

Siiiiiiiiiiigh. I am not going to take that risk. What if I love the painting only to have it be smudged?

Canvas + oil colors + smudge = HORRIBLE disaster.

I'll just have to make do with sketches. Actually it's good, because it's been years (almost six) since the last time I painted. So charcoal drawings are a great way to get my eye and hand in. Getting the flow and light and shades right.

But it's not the only thing I'm doing. I also joined the gym, so the flow of oxygen might do my muse a world of good.

And I can read more. Maybe even finish the library books that I've been loaning for six months now. Yeah there's an idea. I can get out more.

With all these different activities, it will only be a matter of time before my muse returns demanding that I write. Can't wait. But in the mean time, I'm going to change things up and expand my horizons.

Have you ever gone on a writing fast to focus on refueling your creativity? What do you do in that time?


  1. Not a bad idea! When I do that, it's reading that becomes obsessive. Reading always makes me want to write.

  2. Oils take forever to dry!
    I went on a six month fast but it really wasn't by choice. I just couldn't come up with a good idea for my third book.

  3. A wonderful inspiring post! It sounds like you have the right idea Misha. Meanwhile live! Enjoy life!

    Yeah, stay away from oil until you're settled. I know how the smudges look. Some of my oils took a year to really dry. Why don't you do acrylics for a while? There's less fumes to inhale all round.

    I think its wonderful you have joined a gym so the flow of oxygen might do your muse a world of good.

    "it will only be a matter of time before my muse returns demanding that I write."

  4. What a great idea. I was inspired by your idea of immersing yourself in something you love to do. The joy of crafting with words with return, I am sure.

    When my daughter painted her black and white oil masterpiece in our dining room we had to redecorate.

  5. Most of my life my writing has come in spurts. I'll be very prolific for a while and then not write much of anything for a loooooong time. I used to sweat over it, but I don't any more. It's me, it's how I work. It gives me time to play with the other things I'm interested in.

    I think you're doing a good thing. When you have more than one talent or interest you have to give those other areas expression. It's like only eating chocolate when you also love marzipan. You'll get sick of chocolate, crave marzipan and then over-eat it too. It's all about moderation.

  6. I can't write and edit at the same time. It makes my writing suffer becasue I'm thinking about every word choice. No need to feel bad about putting your writing aside so that when time comes, you can do it right :)

  7. Reading tends to take up my time when I'm not writing. Sometimes I can only get through a page or two before my muse stirs and begs to be heard. On days when she hibernates, I occupy my time with something creative, like you with your painting and drawing. I enjoy sewing or shaping things out of Sculpey clay. Best wishes!

  8. I absolutely LOVE working on other creative projects to expand and fuel the writing. I don't have any artistic skill, but I like making poetry videos or taking pictures.

    Sarah Allen
    (my creative writing blog)

  9. I like the term writing fast. I agree, working on other creative projects is a great way to get refueled for writing! Didn't know you lived in the southern hemisphere - cool! (or, apparently, humid?)

  10. Writing fast...maybe that's what I can call it when I'm more interested in reading than writing.

    I always try to do one thing creative a day, even if it's just knitting for a while. It's been forever since I sketched or painted anything (aside from walls) though.

  11. I haven't done any writing fasts purposely, but I like to play role-playing games and read. I use to draw a lot, but now I have very little time to myself, so I have to focus on one thing and that's writing!

  12. I was thinking about just spending the summer reading. I haven't done that in quite a while.

  13. I think that must have been what I've been doing the past few months - on a writing fast. Instead of working on my novel, I have been blogging and scrapbooking and making cards. Good luck with your drawing, Misha!

  14. It's healthy to take a break every now and recharge the writing muse and get the creativity flowing again. :)

    Btw, I have a blog award for you. :)

  15. Doing other creative pursuits and exercise are excellent for opening up the writing mind. I try to do all three in balance, but it works fine in a fast too.

  16. During the last two weeks in May, I was on a writing fast. I knit for a seasonal gallery--which opened on June 15--and my push to complete items meant that I couldn't write. And boy did I miss it. However, I learnt--once again--that taking a break from my writing can be as important to the process as actually writing.
    All the best with your new book, Misha

  17. It almost seems like I'm on a permanent writing fast since I've spent a shameful amount of time in the grips of procrastination. And I haven't even do anything productive with that time. Maybe I'll look into taking some art classes to spark the creative parts of my brain. :-)


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