“It was like completing an Ironman,” Bridget Engel shared in her angelic voice and New Zealand accent. While completing a solid first draft of 7 of her 8 chapters of Guidance to Go in my Bring Your Book to Life(R) Program put Bridget on Cloud 9, it also took its toll.
“I felt like my creative juice had been used up and I needed to take a break from the book, not just from writing it physically, but letting it go mentally and emotionally. I had to stop thinking about it.”
Being an Angel Guide and Coach, Bridget has a nifty tool for this type of creative break. “Energetically, when you want to not think about something, you can imagine putting it in a beautiful gold box, encrusted in jewels. I told myself, ‘I will open this later but not for now’ which gave me the ability to rest and take a break. The gold box is brilliant for people who cannot stop thinking about things or who get emotionally attached. It’s a high energy tool that I recommend to my clients.”
During her break, Bridget did little nourishing things for herself–resting, lighting candles, seeing friends. The time off did wonders for Bridget’s creative process. “My creativity tapped me on the shoulder a month later. ‘I’m ready. I’m ready to write.'”
“I sat down at the computer and brilliant ideas just flowed out, taking the concept to a further developmental place. I love these new ideas, and I needed that respite to make it happen.”
Note: You can read Bridget’s brilliant insights for what to do when you hit writer’s block in a previous blog post. And, please, share your ideas for how you get your creative juices going after a writing marathon!
Kelly Malone says
It’s so great to read about how much stepping back helps you. I often forget. I especially love the idea of storing what you’re trying not to think about in a jeweled box. For me, meditating always helps. So does closing my eyes and just typing without stopping, trusting that whatever flows through will get me on the right track. I’m adding the jewel box to my bag of tricks.
Lisa Tener says
Wow, Kelly, I’ve never tried typing with my eyes closed. That’s a great idea.
Would you please recommend books/reading that can guide me to sharpen my 1st draft. Including grammar and structure (naturally included your own books)
Lisa Tener says
Here are some books I recommend for revising your first draft:
For grammar and punctuation, you will find some common errors to look for in the classic by Strunk and White, The Elements of Style, which, as the title suggests, also includes advice about style. Sin and Syntax by Constance Hale is excellent for style. Sol Stein’s books tend more towards fiction but are also useful for other genres. Those should give you a healthy start. In addition, a great book that offers a methodical way to revise and structure a manuscript is Stuart Horwitz’ Blueprint Your Bestseller. Good luck!