Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Method to Madness: Let go of the hand brake

Blocks happen and you have to somehow break through that wall. Taking into account that your mind is connected to your body and one possible solution could be as simple as letting your hand go…. literally.

I will forever recommend people to write in pen/pencil and paper than computer for various reasons, and one is because writing is either kinetic or mechanical depending on where you are writing. Using a typewriter or computer is not the same as writing with your hand; it can’t be because in one you use different parts of your brain to communicate than the other. In one you execute a series of commands that when put into sequence punch letters in an order whereas when you write with your hand, there are less commands and it can even be one fluid motion. 

If you happen to hit a block, here’s something you can try: 

First off, get yourself some scratch paper or notebooks for taking notes. Then take a pencil or pen and start swirling it on the paper, around and around and around. Don’t think of anything, just focus on getting your hand to move, make it a kinetic relationship between you and what your pen is doing. Start swirling, doing spirals, lift the pen or leave it on the paper, whatever works for you. Just focus on the wonder and dexterity of your wrist. Then while swirling, even if it’s not legible, start writing words, single words, phrases, anything that comes to your mind. Transcribe lyrics of your favorite songs, passages from books, dialogue from a movie, anything. Add to that flowing motion and see how easy you are able to flow and create words. Never mind what they say, just keep writing. Use new paper, fresh paper. See how you start filling it up with lines and occasional words. While thinking of your story, don’t write about your story… hold out. Tease yourself by writing names of your characters in the spirals and swirls. Become a mad painter with your brush and do that for ten minutes straight. Use as much paper as you want and just realize how easy it is to fill a paper with lines.

Then, take a five minute break and close your eyes

Visualize the paper. 

Visualize words materializing and landing on the paper. 

Think of it like rain… first one drop – one word… then another… then another… then a drizzle… then heavier rain and when you feel like the storm is going to really rip… open your eyes, look at the blank paper in front of you… and let it rain.

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