100 Days of Writing – Day 26
*Cough, cough* I’m ok! *sniff* No, I’m fine, really! *Aaaeugcchh!* Listen folks, ain’t nothin gettin in the way of me and my goal, yeah? I may be laid up in bed, surrounded by soggy tissues and half drunk cups of tepid Lemsips (other brands are available, fill your boots, they all taste like shite) but the show must go on.
It’s good to have a change of scenery. I (almost) never write in bed and had forgotten how lovely it can be – all wrapped up and cosy in duvetland, soft bedside lighting, one of the dogs keeping me company, with the rain pelting down at the window. If it wasn’t for the pounding headache, razor blades in my throat and the occasional need to throw off the covers in a panic as the sweats kick in it’d be pretty idyllic.
It’s a case of adapting to the circumstances. Under the influence of the aforementioned meds, there’s a window of an hour or so during which I can crack on with plotting scenes for Book 2. Then the fug descends again. There’s no point calling out to Mr H or the kids, they’ve all taken their own versions of the family lurgy to other rooms. Instead, I give a pathetic little cry for help to my bezzies iPlayer, Netflix and Prime who entertain and soothe until I fall asleep again. On that note, I see it’s the same old same old Apprentice candidates again. Yawn. Series 3 of Transparent is where it’s at…
A couple of things have caught my eye this week. The first is a handy writing tip from blogger Joanna’s Story, in which she suggests having a drink with your character as a way of getting to know them. It’s a different approach to character development and could throw up some interesting new ideas/viewpoints, especially if you’re stuck with an aspect of personality. Not so helpful if your character is a kid. In that instance, maybe treat them to a pizza instead?
The other is a feature from Brain Pickings, a beautifully written and always thought-provoking weekly newsletter, on the art of self-compassion. Some of the early feedback I received on this blog was that I put myself down too much. I defended this as being a good thing. Non-arrogant, self-deprecating, not-100%-confident. In other words: Me. But apparently I wobbled on that fine line between self-deprecation and self-indulgence. A devastating discovery for anyone not-100%-confident. It’s not the end of the world, one person advised, just tone it down a bit.
Tone down being me a bit. Hmm.
I would have thought the opposite would be necessary. Tone oneself up, surely?
Then along comes this gorgeous wee nugget on the perils of self-criticism, accompanied by a charming animation on daily self-compassion practice from my New Favourite Organisation Devoted to Developing Emotional Intelligence, School of Life, and suddenly it all made sense. The critics were right. Self-deprecation is fine. Just don’t mean it. Kindness should extend inwards as well as outwards.
*Sniff* Speaking of which*cough* right now the kindest thing would be a nap. Netflix, be a love and flick that light off would you, oh and while you’re at it can I watch the latest episode of Fear The Walking Dead?…