Sometimes, we writers become so absorbed in our work, we forget its lifeblood.
For us Northerners in particular, summertime can be a much-needed time of restoring ourselves with the life and colors all around us; the life that, later, when the earth becomes frozen again, will bring warmth to our souls, and thus, to our writing.
We need this time to revive our weakened senses. Even if our writing routine changes, nothing is wasted. If we don’t live well, we won’t be able to write well, either.
Here, my sister and sister-in-law are pausing a few moments in the afternoon, summertime breeze, allowing it to mesmerize them.
So far this summer, I’ve absorbed time at a monastery…
Welcomed a new puppy into our family…
Witnessed the lakeside wedding of a friend:
And experienced a trip of a lifetime with my sister in the South.
New Orleans was a city of vibrant colors and intriguing history that I inhaled with great curiosity:
I call her the Rainbow Lady.
This little boy…
couldn’t get his eyes off the Silver Man.
He was out in the humidity, silver paint all over, hot clothes too, doing a routine on the street. Eventually, the two joined forces and did a little break dance, wowing the crowd that had gathered. (My camera wasn’t quick enough.)
Part of the fun in people-watching is watching others’ reactions to things. I enjoyed observing this mime attempt (very successfully) to be perfectly still…
But even more, the passersby watching her. (When it rained, I learned she was real, as she quickly bent down to collect her props and run to shelter.)
The writing life isn’t just about sitting behind a computer screen tapping out word patterns.
It’s about being out in the world and taking it in. It’s about filling ourselves up with experiences, and yes, that includes good food, like shrimp gumbo:
There are few better places to be restored than the beach (look closely and you’ll see the hermit crab inside).
If you go the Gulf, just don’t leave without adding evidence you were there:
In between all these grand adventures, I’ve sucked in the summertime routine of family life: swimming lessons, relaxing at the pool, and finally getting a chance to read those books I’ve been dying to get at for months.
What will we write about if we don’t first fill up with life? Go, fill up, and enjoy every minute of it! The blank sheet of paper will still be there when you return, only now, you’ll have something to fill it with.
Q4U: Where do you plan to fuel up next?