As an introvert and a writer, I need rest and creative refueling like I require water. Rest for introverts (at least for me) includes digging a hole in my backyard like the Russian saints of yore and camping out with some PB & J sandwiches and Gatorade. Have books, food and video games, will travel (or hunker down in this case). My formula: for every one hour of human interaction, one year of solitude will do. As you can imagine, I’m in the red but hopeful.
Writers get ideas by what they see, what they feel, what they observe, experience and ruminate on. For my young adult fantasy novel, a broken mirror became the spark, along with a sermon I heard years later. After the mirror broke, I took a special interest in broken glass and it followed me everywhere. The sermon regarded a very interesting group of ancients who gave up everything, including burning their books, to follow a peculiar Jewish rabbi causing dissent among the order. The glass and the sermon found themselves together in my brain, fused, and my novel grew.
For me, music, movies and visual arts are some of the ways I refuel. Art fairs, museums, YouTube, biographies and studying history are more. I like languages, particularly American Sign Language, and I enjoy learning new words and signs. I listen to people with disabilities share their stories on YouTube, educating myself on their condition(s). Mental illness is another personal topic of interest; my main character in my second novel has schizophrenia. I spent many a hour listening to YouTubers share their experiences and symptoms. Mix all these options up together and you have my special Gatorade blend of refueling.
Movie wise, Silent Hill (Directed by Christophe Gans) is a film I have re-watched several times in the past few months for refueling. The movie disturbed me when I first watched it and I found myself disgusted with the town and cult. (Group think is never the order of the day, ladies and gentlemen). However, Rose’s love for her daughter (Radha Mitchell and Jodelle Ferland, respectively) carried me through the story as Rose literally traversed through a type of hell to rescue Sharon. The texture and visuals in the film are simply amazing as well. The sirens alerting the transition between worlds stayed with me like H.G. Well’s tripods.
Find what fuels you; drink until you’re full. And when you’re accepting your next excellence in literature award, you can then share just how you come by your fabulous ideas…