I’m uninspired to write most days.
I know I could find something to write about if my life depended upon my churning out words — but since it doesn’t, I don’t force it. Yet, even when I’m inspired to write, my pieces run together, indistinguishable, one from the other.
I need a creativity vitamin, something that will help my posts be less generic. So I’m shaking up life with a little ‘research’ and development. I’m going to finally ‘do’ something about my writing, to see if I can take it to the next level, whatever that means.
The biggest shake-in-my-boots change will occur in mid-July, when I run away from home for a week to attend the Iowa Summer Writing Festival at the University of Iowa. I discovered these workshops three years ago, when our youngest son Kyle briefly attended the University of Iowa. All I could afford to do then was dream since we were ‘college poor’. To be honest, we’ve been strapped for cash for the last four years, with two boys in college at the same time.
But since I paid the final set of tuition bills last month, I decided to pull out the dream, to see what workshops were being offered this summer. Each of the workshops is limited to twelve participants — some are weekend workshops and others last five days, Monday through Friday. I had a hard time narrowing the field down to two but I finally did. And before I could change my mind, or convince myself that I didn’t need to do this, I picked up the phone and registered.
The smaller creativity shake-up is that I’ve joined a new on-line writer’s group for women, — www.She Writes.com — a venture that is less than a year old. I joined primarily to take advantage of the on-line courses, though it appears to offer support for publication and other writing adventures. The class I’ve signed up for is called “Word Yoga.” I fear the class will give me — a former ‘mild-mannered’ accountant with a smallish vocabulary — a big linguistic workout. Maybe the class will be like going to a writer’s gym. Five writing exercises are promised each week for four weeks — and our unpolished ‘best’ must be submitted for workshop each week.
I don’t know what will come of either of these writing endeavors. But what I do know is that I need more energy and that I’m ready to stretch and flex my writing muscles. And if either or both of these changes could offer me a boost, I will be glad I stepped out of my comfort zone to enroll in the writer’s gym classes.
Unlike those gym classes in junior high, I am consoled by the fact that I won’t be required to get naked. Or will I?
Oh, now you have all my juices flowing! I enjoyed looking through the SheWrites site, especially at some of the blog entries. I especially enjoyed this one.
It tickles me to think of you back in my home territory, too. I did undergraduate work in Cedar Falls and Iowa City both, and although I know both have changed substantially, I have great memories.
What I haven’t thought about in ages is that I spent two high school summers there myself, at the speech and drama workshops. I worked with interpretive reading and original oratory. I should have tackled some poetry – Paul Engle was still around, and available to the poetry buffs.
My second year I took first place in the oratory contest. I can’t even remember what I wrote about, except that it had something to do with democracy. I do remember the finals, held in the Senate chambers of the Old Capitol. I was terrified beforehand, and sat outside on one of the big porticos, singing “When the Red, Red Robin Comes Bob-bob-bobbin’ Along” to calm my nerves.
I learned how to really project my voice there, too. It comes in handy now, when I have to get the attention of someone on another dock. 🙂
I’m so excited for you! Just the thought of a change of scene and all that creativity may start affecting you long before you even get there. That’s why I always try to schedule treats like that far enough in the future that I get the double pleasure of anticipating them!
I even went over to the site to see what it was all about. What a fun experience it will be.
Thanks for sharing my joy.
The blog post you linked to on SheWrites.com was written by BK Loren, “my” instructor for five days in Iowa City. It was from searching the internet for background information on BK that led me the SheWrites web site.
I’m not surprised that you and the University of Iowa have crossed paths. I was surprised to read that your time there took you to Iowa’s Senate chambers. I don’t imagine you will ever cease in surprising me.
Anticipation is grand — but so are surprises. And taking steps in this direction covers both bases!