Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Writing is like a dance

Writing is like a dance: You must wait to hear the music before you begin to move.

That's because the inspiration to dance comes from the music. The feelings evoked by simple tones and simple beats are a visceral response. Your feet move and your body follows.  If you over think it, you stumble, or maybe--horror of all horrors--you step on someone's toes! You need to relax and allow the music to guide you, giving up control to the music and allowing it to overtake you.

Writing is no different. It begins with some form of inspiration, whether that be a conversation, an observance, a dream, even a sunny day. 

I am a dream writer.  I pick up my cues from daily living and somehow, those events translate into a story in my dreams. Some of those stories are romantic, some are stark, some are sad, and some are downright frightening. Unfortunately, by the time I wake, I have usually forgotten the dream. Flashes may come back throughout the next day as I attempt to recapture what I knew was a New York Times bestseller idea, but unless the dream repeats itself the next night, it has disappeared into the shallows of my mind.

Sometimes, however, a dream forces me to wakefulness. Then I grab my cell phone and record the dream. I am always surprised the next morning to find my "text to self," but the ideas I commit to text are what spur my mind and generate stories.

Similarly, if I fall asleep puzzling over a plot or a character, my dreams provide clarity and many times, a resolution. There is truth in the old adage: "Sleep on it." Sleep allows the mind to function without interruption, to burrow into the far reaches of your soul, and that is an invaluable tool.

I cannot ignore the inspiration born of my dreams, perhaps that is why I became a writer. I have always been fascinated with words and the magic of using them to shape stories. I enjoy crafting scintillating prose from random thoughts and mere germs of an idea. I love molding words into a solid expression of an idea. 

Writing frees my soul, words drive my passion. That's why I write books. There is nothing more fascinating or satisfying.

--Seelie Kay