I am thrilled and honoured to have this post published by the Quebec Writers Federation as part of their “Chronicling the Days” writing project. Pop over to the site to read the experience of other writers during the pandemic.
Welcome to QWF series ‘Chronicling the Days’, specifically for this strange uneasy time of coronavirus and pandemic, of social distancing and self isolation, of lockdown and quarantine. In April 2020, we invited writers in Quebec to submit a story – of a single day at this time, because while we’re all living through this time, […]
via Chronicling the Days – Linda Thompson — QWF Writes
Image by StockSnap from Pixabay
I have a friend who loves to take his laptop and sit in a bustling café to write or work. Well-known authors of books on writing recommend just that: Take yourself off to a place that will generate ideas or kick writer’s block to the curb. That could never work for me.
I write in my office in the basement of our home, alone and in silence. The desk I use is my son’s from his high school and college days. The base is a deep, forest green that matched the shade of green he had chosen for his room. He’d also picked out a wallpaper border that showed the majestic heads of a trio of wolves with the same green background. I’d gone along with his choices but hadn’t been convinced the result would be great. In the end, it turned out beautifully.
We bought him the desk after he was admitted to a high school he really wanted to attend. He had worked so hard to pass the entrance exam and the desk was recognition of that work. He didn’t want it when he left home so I claimed it. The light, faux-oak top is scuffed and well-used now but it reminds me of the days when he sat at this very desk, tapping his pen against it and daydreaming instead of doing homework.
The lamp perched on the desk is even older. It was a wedding gift from an aunt and is made of heavy bronze with a rigid, pleated shade. I have to turn it on, even in daytime, because my office has no windows or natural light. The lamp bathes my work area in a soft pool of golden light, leaving a dusky darkness all around. It reminds me of scribes working by candlelight, their quills scratching against the paper as they write.
The bookshelf on the wall behind me is more recent. My husband offered it to me after he sold his business and no longer needed it. It houses books on horses, writing, personal development and a small selection of favourite novels.
I am happy writing in this space I call my own that’s filled with little reminders of the people in my life.
I first started a blog four years ago and I was excited and starry-eyed about the whole project. It was called “52 Weeks” and the idea was to post once a week about a fabulous woman (friend, colleague, family member, etc.) I had the good fortune to have in my life. Before publishing, I interviewed the “woman of the week”, wrote and edited the article, found a good photo to accompany the article, etc. It was fun but time-consuming. My biggest fear, though, was not doing justice to the women I was trying to honour. I lasted seven weeks.
Just over a year ago, I re-booted the blog as “Inked In” with a completely different focus. My main goal was to write regularly enough to make it a part of my routine. I didn’t limit my content to any particular topic, but hoped I would find subjects interesting enough to the blogging community. Nor did I commit to posting once a day but aimed for at least 2-3 posts a week.
And until recently, I’ve done OK. Not great, but OK. But lately, well, inspiration is hard to come by so I’ve been missing in action. I’ve tried Julia Cameron’s “Morning Pages and stream of consciousness writing (not one of my favourite exercises) without much luck. So, I thought that I would do two things to kick-start my writing again:
- Salute the bloggers out there who faithfully show up and WRITE. Some of the ones I follow and read regularly are Maggie at From Cave Walls, Elizabeth at Saved by Words, Beetley Pete, just to name a few. You are my heroes!
- One of the first blogs I wrote last year was called “The Case of the Missing Sock”, but it’s really about writing what you know. I’m going to re-read it and try to take my own advice and write about something I know, even if it’s missing socks.
If you have advice about making time to write, finding ideas, etc., please feel free to share!