By Elizabeth Cutright
© 2012 The Daily Creative Writer
Remember that one classroom assignment that was as predictable during the first week of school as the smell of freshly sharpened pencils and the pinch of new shoes? Every year like clockwork the teacher would ask the you answer that one, big, question: what did you do on your summer vacation?
Woe be to you if you spent the last few months sitting on the couch watching soap operas with your Nanna. And there were always those kids who’d packed in a lifetime of adventure over the break: river rafting or touring Europe. How could you compete?
Right now, my friends’ kids are already battling the summer doldrums. Skipping camps and apparently too young for gainful employment, they bluster and pout and demand entertainment. I tried to help.
“You need a project,” I said. “Compose a song. Paint a birdhouse. Build a robot!”
And while they don’t seem particularly inspired by my suggestions, perhaps the writers and creatives among you will welcome another motivational tool.
What do you say this summer we all start a writing project? Nothing fancy. Just something to do during those moments of peace; take advantage of those sunny pauses for dreaming and creating. Instead of plowing through that juicy new best seller or endlessly flipping the pages of glossy magazines, use those beach towel moments and backyard respites to block out a plot, or flesh out new characters. Maybe you can finally start those morning pages. Could be time to finally begin that blog.
If you’re like me, your summer vacation probably won’t amount to more than a couple of three day weekends and maybe an extra day off here or there. Don’t let your limited time off discourage you. Now’s the time to practice writing in the nooks and crannies of your life. Surely- as the days grow longer, and the world slows its pace just a bit – you can snatch 15 minutes here, a half-hour there. It’s possible, but you do have to do one thing: try.
So put down Shades of Gray and start your own writing project. I absolutely promise you feel much more titillated and satisfied in the end.
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