Routines are incredibly important. The more you write, the more your writing brain wants to create… more and more and more. I live the proof of this. Early on this month I was putting a lot of time and energy into preparing for a vacation; making lists of what to pack and what to buy, shopping, what I could not forget, prescriptions that needed to be picked up, instructions for the husband left behind about what and how much and how often to feed the animals.
I packed a suitcase and a carry-on, dividing clothing between the two in the event of missing luggage. Then I re-packed the original suitcase into a bigger suitcase
I packed homework and the child’s portable video game player, iPod, telephone, camera, e-reader, and device chargers galore.
I loaded my Sony e-reader with books from the library, books from the Reader store, fiction, non-fiction, and my own works, just in case I wanted to edit during quiet time on the cruise. I emailed my contracted and un-contracted works in progress to myself, just in case the house burnt down in my absence. I left my computer at home.
Can you believe such craziness? I am a writer, and I left my computer at home! I knew from previous experience, however, that internet access from a ship in the ocean is an extravagance that I can live without.
I shopped for a pretty new notebook, however, and some of my favorite ink pens. Writing, for me, has never required a word processor.
I enjoyed my trip. I even touched a dolphin!
I took a lot of pictures, not artsy, beautiful pictures, but hundreds of snapshots so I would remember this, and this, and that other experience. The inside of a stretch limo should be remembered. My daughter having her hair wrapped by a large, loud, black woman on Grand Bahamas island needs to be remembered.
I did not write a word.
Not a poem. Not a sentence of a novel. Nothing.
Traveling with a child is not relaxing. Fun, yes, for sure! But not exactly the experience of swaying gently in a hammock feeling the Caribbean breeze waft through your hair as afternoon slowly leaks into evening. Not like that.
I have been home for five days. I went to my day job on Tuesday, otherwise, I have been wandering aimlessly around the house (I suspect with the misguided notion that I am “cleaning”) and accomplishing nothing productive whatsoever.
My writing routine has been shot to hell. I know that as January ended, I was fired up and fleshing out a new project, but as of today, I have only the barest recollection of what that project entailed.
Back in January, I even had a schedule of sorts detailing which days I would concentrate on writing and which days on blogging, marketing and social networking. But I have no idea where that piece of paper ended up.
Writing begets writing. I will get back on schedule, next week. For sure.