Thursday, May 11, 2017

Refilling Our Creative Wells

If you could read or write anywhere, with all time and responsibilities suspended, in a scenario where money is no object, where would that be? Just you and your laptop/notebook or stack of books.

When I'm busy, I find my mind wandering to my happy place, a cave-like coffee shop with squashy leather couches, a gentle fire going, and the doors wide open, allowing the ambient noise of rainfall in until its smell magically mixes with fresh coffee beans.

Books like Big Magic and The War of Art have changed the conversation about creative endeavors, shifting the focus from art/hobby to work. But we must remember that there's another side of that coin--the importance of rest. When I began to see my writing as work, it was hard to shift that mentality from hobby and outlet to something I needed regular breaks from. It used to be my respite, after all!

But no matter how much fulfillment our work may give us, it's important to find a healthy balance and allow our creative wells to refill.   
I had the chance to attend a women's retreat this weekend with no cell service and a body of water right outside my door, complete with roomy porch overlook. It was glorious and just what I needed!

But it's not practical to get away every weekend, and I certainly can't escape to my coffee shop and leave babies to fend for themselves. So I have been spending beautiful nap times outside, tiny pockets of time soaking in the Vitamin D, reading for fun, or diving into the Bible. There may be lumbering cement trucks instead of the peace of the hills, but this special little spot helps me enjoy my work a little more :)

Do you have good boundaries with your work? (Teach us your ways!!) How do you create space for rest? Tell us about your dream reading/writing spot!


Laurie Tomlinson is an award-winning contemporary romance author and cheerleader for creatives. She believes that God's love is unfailing, anything can be accomplished with a good to-do list, and that life should be celebrated with cupcakes and extra sprinkles. 

Previously a full-time book publicist, Laurie now serves as a virtual assistant and runs a freelance editing and PR consulting business called 1624 Communications

She lives with her husband and two small children in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Her debut contemporary romance novel, With No Reservations, is now available wherever books are sold from Harlequin Heartwarming.

You can connect with Laurie on her website, Facebook page, and Twitter


Debra E. Marvin said...

Oh so true!
I'd love a nice quiet break to read With No Reservations. I downloaded the sample and you sold me!

but contracts call. Writers want contracts. Contract own writers!

Casey said...

My dream reading place would be a cabin in the middle of the nowhere. Sitting, either on the front porch swing, or sitting inside with the windows thrown wide open and the call of birds and the chirp of crickets to keep me company and the only other sound as the wind through the grass. Oh the lovely long walks in the evenings that place would bring! you have me daydreaming at my desk. :-))

Laurie Tomlinson said...

@Debra - I hear you on that completely! Currently working on the proposal that never ends :)

@Case - That sounds so, so dreamy!

Glynis said...

You all are making me aware that I need to find a "happy place"! I guess I don't really have a perfect spot, so now I think I may have to take a long break and find one :)

Krista Phillips said...

The beach. Probably not ON the beach, but in a beach house.... the sliding doors open, the smell of the ocean tickling my nose, the sounds of the water, the warm breeze... ahhh. Yes. I could write there!!

Unknown said...

I live in my dream spot (a cabin in the middle of nowhere), but not having distractions would make it perfect - especially with all the rain we've been getting!

Robin E. Mason said...

Ideal - sitting on the deck of a cabin in the mountains, by a river or stream. Since that's not even an option, my front porch serves well, or a walk - just being outdoors. I sits and watches, looking at the trees, listening to the neighborhood kids (my grandgirl included) laugh and play. did i mention the trees? there's gotta be trees...