At a certain point, it becomes necessary to go out into the world and directly see the ideas in your head…
A few posts ago, I believe I spoke on trying to figure out the best way to determine when you needed to just take a break from it all, instead of trying to break through your creative roadblock; and while I’m always an advocate for pushing through difficulties, I realize that sometimes you need to just step away for a moment and ‘recharge’ yourself in a way. For a week, I had the chance to do just that.
I had the opportunity to spend a week traveling to both the Cayman Islands and Jamaica with friends. No cell phone reception, no computer, and although I had my ‘idea’ notebook with me, I pretty much didn’t do any writing at all and simply ‘lived in the moment.’ I also made sure to make the most of my time by talking to new people and exploring as much as I could. This started on our boat and continued when we docked at each port town.
Ego will often times make a person feel as if they’re well versed in everything. Even if they haven’t directly experienced it. We are the kings and queens of our own respective ‘bubbles’ and within that territory we determine the course of our own personal reality. But what we easily forget, time and time again, is that that sphere of influence isn’t that big at all. In fact, it’s pretty paltry in comparison to the rest of the world; and coming back from this amazing trip of interacting with cultures that I haven’t spoken to before, left me with the impact of just how wondrously vast this planet is and just how small our perspective is for others.
But what does any of this have to do with my writing? I take it as inspiration. The calming power of the ocean, the tropical environments of the caribbean, the rustic and hard working people who inhabit these areas, and the mysteries that lay below the water, bring to mind confirmation of ideas that have been circulating in my head for about a year now. The premise of the novel that I wanted to write but couldn’t quite get the ‘feel’ of island life down. Do I feel like I’m some expert on it now? Of course not, but it’s way more of a start than I had before. Simply reading information wasn’t cutting it.
Get out there and experience the world with your own eyes. Sure it’s great to get a post card (do people still send those out??) or watch an Instagram video of someone else’s vacation, but it’ll never be the same. We are the culmination of our own personal experiences. If that only amounts to the four corners of your room, then you’re cutting yourself off from so much out there.
Sometimes to connect with your story, you need to disconnect from all other distractions and go to the source.
Until next time.