Monday, January 24, 2011

Monday Musings: Balancing Creativity

I’ve been writing on an intensive schedule since before November. The story is coming along good, but I hit a spot I need to do some thinking. I have my plot points clear in mind; the character arcs are there. I’m having fun with the adventure but I need to do some layering in a section. I’m letting it percolate in my mind for a while. This past week has been a much-needed break and a healthy step away from a long-term project.

So, instead of editing and layering my WIP I’m playing with another passion of mine, photography. I have a couple-hundred pictures I took for a wedding and for another function, both formal and candid, which need to be cropped and edited. I have other photo projects to do for various family members too. It’s a different creative process but it allows me to do something with hands while my ADD mind is thinking on another project. I’ve always enjoyed taking pictures and I love the creative process of editing them. It’s fun and relaxing for me, especially when I can add some of my favorite music. I find I need that periodically.

I also need to finish filling my February and March Over Coffee calendar (I’m willing to entertain suggestions on authors to have here). So when my eyes start to cross because I’m doing some concentrated detail work, I take a break and work on the calendar. Or read books I need to write reviews for which currently stands at six. Meanwhile a section of my brain is busy at work with my story. I did mention my ADD brain, right? When it’s finished processing the hows, I’ll be going ah-ha and go back to my story with a fresh perspective. It’s all good.

  • How do you balance out your writing time? How do you relax so you come back to your project with a refreshed spirit and a mind ready to work?

  •  If you don’t write, how do you relax from your daily workday?







Tonya Kappes said...

I have a writing schedule I TRY to keep everyday. BUT my boys are so active in sports now that it's hard to meet that with a day job. I'm finding that I'm carrying more my journal and printed ms in order to edit...LIFE! I love your photo, Sia.

Isabel Roman said...

Balance? What is this word? I do not understand. I work, write, crash. Balance. Huh, by definition it's from Middle English, 1250–1300 (I guess they didn't know the word, either, prior to 1250). "A state of equilibrium or equipoise; equal distribution."

Equal distribution? Huh. Balance. Well, I applaude your balance, I'm not so sure how to acheive mine. I'll let you know if that works. :)

But the photos are lovely! (How would you like to stop by my blog one fine Friday in February and talk of this balance?)

Jo said...

I am lucky, being retired, I can just have a nap when life gets too much. Or play solitaire, or read a book.

VA said...

Balance? What's that?

Sure I understand the concept, but my execution sucks. Thus daily writing quotas fail and then I'll write 15K in a couple of days or a week. Then abandon it again.

I am really trying to embrace the reality that one can only have so many balls in the air at one time. My juggling capacity is not infinite and I have to make decision on what to pursue at what time and ACCEPT it.

VA said...

Other possible authors:

Monica McCarty
Jill Myles
Dana Fredsti
Laura Griffin
Starr Ambrose

Talli Roland said...

Lovely photos!

It's great you have another passion for something, to balance out the writing. I try to go outside for walks in the park, breathe in the air, and take in a few art galleries!

~Sia McKye~ said...

Isabel you crack me up. I'm not going to say I always achieve it but I'm the kind that has to have balance and quiet time or I go nuts.

A Friday in February? Sure. Do you have my email? Let's talk.

~Sia McKye~ said...

Talli, that sounds lovely. I thinks it's a matter of putting yourself elsewhere for a while and giving yourself permission to enjoy that time. :-)

~Sia McKye~ said...

Vivian, thanks for the suggestions. Some I've had and I'll check out the others. Nalini will be a guest the end of May. Still working on Kate Morton.

VA said...

End of May, sweet.

Awesome pics, btw. Magical really. Funny how pictures capture a whole moment, freezing it. I swear my daughter only remembers things from her childhood that have an accompanying photo.

Olivia Cunning said...

Awwww, your niece holding that kitteh is so adorable! *squeezles*

When I find my muse is being tight-lipped (stiff-fingered), I edit something else. My mind is also ADD and I'll be working on one thing and blam, the piece that's been missing from something else smacks me upside the head. I honestly can not concentrate on only one thing at a time. Working on my website is what I do when I'm not writing, working at the day job, mothering or domestic-goddessing these days. Fun? What's that?

N. R. Williams said...

Your photo's are beautiful. I'm impressed. I used to watch T.V. but I have discovered that the more I write, the less I enjoy T.V. I also read, play with the grandchildren, listen to my children and wish I had a clone to do the housework. LOL

Thank you for your post on Helen Ginger's blog.
N. R. Williams, fantasy author

Isabel Roman said...

OK, can't find your address, though I thought I had it. Email me,, and we'll work out a date.

Helen Ginger said...

I am not a good source to answer your question. I have no balance. Just chaos.

~Sia McKye~ said...

Nancy, if you find a clone to do housework so let me know. I could use one myself. There are a few shows on TV I like but I've never been a big TV fan.

I'm not a professional photographer by any means but I do know how to take some good pictures and do some formal set ups mostly for my huge clan. :-)

~Sia McKye~ said...

@Helen. Lolol! Well, my life has a good measure of chaos as well. I enjoyed your blog today. :-)

~Sia McKye~ said...

Exactly, Olivia! I find when the harder I try to force something the more elusive it becomes. So I turn on some music and rock and do something else.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Sia .. when I catch my tail - I'll let you know - I'm in balance .. completely circular, and by that time a nice round ball too - I guess? Still I keep working and hitting the kinks in the tail .. it's the brain that needs the balance .. but with my body?! Too, too many thoughts ... not enough minutes to get sorted .. one day life will prevail! Cheers and I love your photos .. and calendar thinking - when's February, let alone March?! Hilary

Jenyfer Matthews said...

I love to take pictures too - the huge capacity of the memory card in my camera is a blessing and a curse! LOL

Other ways I take a step back from writing to regroup is to quilt. I love to play with color and design - and my brain can mull over plot points and story elements while my hands are busy sewing :)