Over the past few years, I've done quite a bit of guest blogging and I was a regular blogger at The Writer's Vineyard. While looking over some of these old blog posts the other day, I thought it might be fun to republish them here at the Garret and so I'm beginning a new feature called Friday Flashback.
This inaugural installment was first published at The Writer's Vineyard back in 2013.
I love spending time in the worlds I create. A lot of writers feel the same way. One of my favorite authors once thanked his wife and daughters for allowing him to spend so much time with his imaginary family while he was writing his novel.
Creating a fictional world is like living in an alternate universe. One of the things I’ve learned as a writer is that I need to honor the time spent in made up words with made up people. The more time I spend in the little world of my creation, the more real I can make it for the reader.
This can be difficult in today’s face-paced on-line tuned-in world. It’s easy to get caught up in reading tweets and status updates and e-mails. These things are important to a working writer. Equally important is shutting the door and letting yourself dream.
I have to remind myself that staring out the window is part of the job. To imagine is what I do, and the better I imagine the more deeply human the characters that come from imagining. If I don’t honor time out for imagining, I’m left feeling anxious and bereft. I’m learning to listen to the signals. I’m learning to carve out time each day to spend in my own little world. After all, they know me there.