Tip 8: Use your “down time” for being creative

by richard on May 19, 2011

wide angle willow 300x300 Tip 8: Use your down time for being creative

This post relates to my blog series on the top ten tips to writing a novel. Visit my archives to see the full list, and other relevant postings.

It’s really hard to come up with creative ideas “on cue”. Life just doesn’t work like that. I find that when you separate you mind from the problem at hand, you often have a solution pop into your head. When I’m walking the dog, I often bring myself back to the story line I’m working on, and see if anything new percolates. It’s amazing how new ideas can just begin to float before your eyes. Not that they are always good mind you, but the point is it gives you a chance to see things in a new light, with less pressure.

I also believe the shower is a great place for creative thought. As are traffic jams, and train trips. There are plenty of opportunities in our day to open our minds up to creative thought.

You don’t need a lot of time, just the willingness to let ideas float in and out of your conscious, and be in the frame of mind to pick out the good ones. Don’t put any pressure on yourself – sometimes nothing good will come, but other days you will get pearls!

Of course the other piece of advice is to have a means of capturing the idea. Pen and paper is good, but not great in the shower. I just read about someone who thought up a song while walking down the street, and had to send texts to their partner to capture the verses. You can always call your voice mail and leave yourself a message. What do you do if you’ve forgotten your phone, pen, and paper while walking on the beach? Well I’ve tried getting my dog to help me remember, but when I ask her for her thoughts later on, it always translates into food.

Richard Jagger formerly worked in the biotechnology industry, and has completed his first novel “The Cure”. Apart from writing his second novel, he works as a professional photographer. He has had two solo photographic exhibitions and one joint painting exhibition. Further information can be found at www.richardjagger.com

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