process

When i think about my writing process i see the word as both a noun and a verb.
noun: the more obvious definition. the actual tactics, a-to-b-to-c that it takes to get something done.
verb: here’s the more magical part. the behind-the-curtain machinery of creating. it’s an act.

Staying in bed in the wee hours of this Sunday morning, I felt a little paralyzed against the to-do list of the day.
As I tried my best to lighten up, I realized (again) i need to have patience with myself. Let myself sit with the work for a while, spend time with a blank page. Meditate.

At work, there’s constant pressure to be productive. (the pressure is as much internal as it is external.)
complete tasks. multitask. return emails. go to meetings. (heard this described as “tyranny of the immediate” at my conference last week.)
I need to remember that in creative work, part of the WORK is stillness…
quiet…
doing nothing…
…because it’s in that nothingness that thoughts begin to fire. connections can be made. stillness isn’t inaction. it’s the calm before the storm.
I need time to process.

give my mind time to doodle.
what gordon mackenzie defines as “Compassionate emptiness: to be in a state of nonjudgmental receiving.”
give myself time to suck for a while before it gets good.
what anne lemott calls “shitty first drafts.”

If i sit still long enough and i let ideas marinate, somehow (always. inexplicably.) my guiding metaphor appears.
my train of thought pulls into the station and it’s all aboard. (hey, not all metaphors are worth keeping…)

so here i am. dancing in my office chair to phoenix on lala.com (omg. new favorite thing[s]), enjoying the first frappuccino i’ve allowed myself in months, and, well, working.

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