Once I turned in my last project, I knew my downtime would be near zero before having to jump into the next project. Instead, I jumped off the hamster wheel to pause, take a deep breath, and continue taking deep breaths (of course, exhaling). What I did was head for the library and grabbed two armloads of books.
Yes, I'm a bookaholic and will always have a book in hand, e-books too. My varied collection, this time, was more than casual reading. I was on the hunt for my reading-writing mojo. What did that mean?
For me, the reading and writing mojo are connected. I read before writing was ever a thought. How would you know how to tell a story, if you don't read? Why would you write if you didn't experience the emotions that you'd felt from reading? Those books that I've read and continue reading always motivate me with the desire to tell my stories, share my what if scenarios.
Over time, that mojo may get stale, lose its strength, or not have enough juice to nourish the creative well. And so I browsed library shelves selecting books that were recommended by friends, books by authors who I've always admired, books that approach subjects that I'm interested in writing, etc. Some were genre-specific, some were mainstream, some were writing manuals. And every day, I read, pondered over what I liked or didn't care for; considered the technique of the writer; deliberated over my satisfaction, or lack thereof. I made notes from the how to, considered the suggestions on improving the craft, etc.
And I know that what is occurring, what is transforming, is a steady journey from a narrow waterway to the expansive area of uncharted waters. Nothing is defined, at the moment (or that I'm willing to share with specifics). And that's how I want it. I'm open. Ready to receive and in exchange, gift what I've learned, what I question, what I celebrate, what I doubt, what I propose, what I love in bigger, bolder works.
That's a big task ahead. But it's one that only I can make. And really, I'm up for the challenge. Ready to fluff, spread my wings, and lift off for places yet to be discovered by me.