Monday, September 13, 2010

Refilling the Ink Pot

On Saturday, Psychic Andy was a guest speaker at the Heartland Writer's Group meeting. He talked about his intuition and perception growing up, his journey to accepting his abilities and using them, what it's like to give a reading, differences between ghosts, imprints, and spirits, and many other matters of sensory acuity. He was captivating, and I took 6 pages of notes!

The things he spoke of didn't seem strange to me, nor did they sound fantastical or unlikely. I grew up with a father whose dreams came true. He would tell his dreams to my mom and me and usually within two weeks, what he dreamt would happen. He would be vague sometimes, like the time he said, "Something's going on in Iowa." Then a few days later, parts of Iowa started to flood. The flood lasted for 6 months. Other times, he was more specific. He told me something was wrong with Magic Johnson two days before Magic announced he was HIV positive. He told me that a Nebraska football player who had trouble with law a year before was about to have trouble again. In less than a week, the player (who'd been out of the spotlight for a year) was back in the news--this time for attacking a woman. I can't explain it all, and I can't say that my father was psychic. But what I will say is that breakfast in our home was often interesting.

After hearing Psychic Andy, I've decided to invest some page time in exploring my characters' deep intuitions. Not so much strong impulses, but staying a moment with what their raw instincts tell them about a situation and what happens when they have no faith in their own judgment or . . . follow it blindly.

Psychic Andy's talk was in the morning, that afternoon I attended the Downtown Lit Fest. I heard discussions on the future of the book (and the surge of e-publishing) as well as readings from novels and comments from a panel of writers who'd contributed to a fairy tale anthology. The event was held in Kaneko, an open space for art and creativity, and reminded me of how important it is to:

• Refuel the muse

• Be around like-minded people

• Be inspired by other writers

• Learn more about the craft

• Indulge creativity

• See how others are: pushing the envelope, re-imagining the craft, creating in new directions

I'm hesitant to say this, but I'm going to say it anyway, I feel sorry for people who don't "get out." For some writers, all they know about writing is the space in their home where they sit and write. Now, if that process is workin' for ya, cool. But I still wonder how much richer a person's writing would be if they mingled--actually walked around in the world of writing & creativity that exists beyond their fingertips. There's nothing wrong with appreciating a rose for its fragrance and beauty, but if you stand back from the rose for just a moment, you’ll be awed by an entire garden of aroma & splendor just a few short steps away.

Like they say at the Discovery Channel, "Explore Your World."

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