Friday, June 22, 2012

Exercise: Inspiration and Perspiration

Thoughts I've recently explored while spinning away on my spin bike:

--Yesterday I spun longer than I thought I might, partly because it felt good, and partly because I was exploring interesting short story ideas that I want to write.  You may remember that I'm working on a linked story collection and that I'm doing more with future generations than I originally thought I would.  I've also been feeling inspired by my memories of Ray Bradbury's The Martian Chronicles.

Yesterday, I thought, what if one of the characters was cloned and reappeared later?  And then I thought, what if is was a future generation of cloning, where it wasn't just genetic information that got replicated into the clone, but also memories and information?

And what would you call this future generation of cloning?  If you've got clever ideas, I'd love to hear them.

I know that scientifically, it looks impossible to do that.  At least from where we sit and write now.  But I'm not sure I'm worried about that.

--Today I thought about various writing projects.  I've been thinking of eBooks and becoming my own publisher.  But what about audio books?  I'm not seeing a lot of audio books of poems.  I bet there are people out there, especially people with vision issues, who would happily pay for an audio book of poems.

--I also spent a lot of time thinking about my upcoming stint as Vacation Bible School Arts and Crafts director.  My problem, and what a delightful problem, is that I have too many ideas.  But I'm narrowing them down!


I love the way that exercise leads to inspirations of all sorts.  Some of my best ideas have come during long runs.  I've solved all sorts of writing problems, from grad school papers to my dissertation to plot issues in my novels and short stories.

It's a stage of composition that we don't always hear much about.  When I took Composition theory classes, we covered all sorts of prewriting techniques, but very little was said about how the brain works on composing even when it's not looking at paper and scrawling out ideas.

Some times long walks have helped me solve writing problems, but often, the sweatier the exercise, the more quickly solutions come to me.

At least now, after years of writing, I realize that if I'm blocked, it might help to get out and take a walk or go for a run/spin.  Long ago I might have forced myself to sit; now I don't. 

Of course, now my problem lies in finding time to pursue all the interesting ideas that come to me while I'm exercising!


Wendy said...

I'd love an audio book of poems to savor when I walk. (I've recorded a couple myself when I've wanted to memorize them). I've also been thinking about oral poetry because I've been pointed to Sarah Kay (Krista Tippett interviewed her on On Being) and Taylor Mali (a couple different references from completely different life moments) recently. It's an interesting medium.

BeBe Blake said...

I would happily devour audio books of poems with the author reading. It would increase my enjoyment and understanding of the poem to hear the voice of the writer - tone, emphasis, pauses. Readings on the run! Yes!