Healthy Writer

Sunday, March 11, 2012

If you’ve dropped by this blog with any type of regularity, you probably have come across a post alluding to me striving for balance in my life. (usually that post came after a long out of date post).

Case in point. ahem

The detrimental effects of long-term stress have been well document, and let me tell you I’m a walking text-book case of it. Name a stress related malady and I can put a checkmark beside it. It got to the point where I realized that if I didn’t take active measures, I could very well find myself in the hands of medical professionals, both mental and physical, at some point in the near future. ‘Just trying to chill’ just wasn’t cutting it.

I started hitting the gym on a consistent basis, expanded the vitamins & supplements I take, changed my eating to be more healthier/organic, drink more water, juices, herbal/green teas, etc. It’s really starting to pay off after only a short space of time.

One area I’m still struggling with though, is the writing. I can’t totally claim the lack thereof is all due to stress (though dealing with stress & it’s accompanying health concerns will always trump dealing with the writing). It’s partly a discipline, also. Need to find the right block of time to write and make it a habit. One other factor comes into play, too. Mindset. I need to be immersed in the book, constantly thinking about the characters, plot streams, goal, motivation, conflicts. Scenes need to play out in my head on a regular loop. The whole stress thing interferes with this process. But this morning I was reminded of one way to overcome this. Reading. But reading good shit.

Not mediocre/okay/pretty-good/not bad stuff. I’ve been reading a lot of mediocre/okay/pretty-good/not bad stuff. Short-stories/novellas, mostly erotica. (most of which has not been listed on my Goodreads shelf, btw). The equivalent of fast-food—tasty, goes down fast, but no nutritional value. I was reading mostly for sheer entertainment/content and as a quick/easy distraction. And there’s nothing wrong with that, but it can’t be all there is.

Almost none of what I’ve been reading has nourished or inspired me. I wasn’t getting carried away by the storytelling or the emotions, or the basic writing-craft to the point that I wanted to rise to that bar myself. This morning I read a chapter of something by a skilled author that reminded me, this is what I want to do. I want to write seamless, realistic dialogue like this. I want to flesh out my story world with these types of details and my pacing to flow so easily. I want my characters to live and breathe like this.

So, I’m going to have to cut down on my literary equivalent of ‘just chilling’ reading choices, and start a diet of more fulfilling stories, that should in turn bring some vigor/health to my own writing output (and that includes blogging ::fingers crossed::).
Blog Widget by LinkWithin


raine said...

Funny, I've been thinking along much these same lines...
Can definitely testify to stress making already-existing issues SO much worse.
And have been pretty dissatisfied with much of my reading lately. I've been telling myself it's me, and that maybe I'm in some kind of funk. But I've started retreating to some of my old favorite keepers, which is kinda telling...

vanessa jaye said...

It is incredible how detrimental stress is to one's health. It really is pervasive on all fronts. :/

As for reading, I've eased up on glomming the Kindle cheapies/freebies and getting back into my paperbacks. Also digging into the keeper shelf like you.

Related Posts with Thumbnails

2008 Vanessa Jaye | All Rights Reserved | Design by Katrina Glover | Back to top

You are visitor number:

web stats