In order to take the story I had written three years ago through the publishing and printing process I teamed up with Sheri Andrunyk and I C Publishing. Sheri Andrunyk is the founder of I C Publishing and the I C Bookstore, entrepreneur expert, and author of Working From Home & Making It Work and Hearts Linked by Courage. She is extremely passionate about providing more choices and high level support to other writers, business professionals, wellness coaches, and spiritual mentors.
She has invited me to participate in the I C Summer Blog Tour, “Navigating the Writing Path: From Start to Finish” which she is hosting. I have never participated in a blog tour and I am very excited to be sharing this experience with a vast number of talented people.
I also have to introduce Carly Ottaway (@charlottaway), who has passed the pen to me from her post on June 18th, on her blog CharlottesWebofWords.ca. She is a creative non-fiction writer and small business blogger published in Canadian publications such as Zoomer and The Globe and Mail. Check out her words on this topic as well!
How do you start your writing/artistic projects?
There Is This Place is my first writing project. I am an artist before an author. This book began as an assignment for my Literature and Language class in teachers college at Nipissing University. As a result I began writing about a theme that had been present in my artwork for many years.
Words and Point Form. It seems that for me, beginning with brainstorming and getting as much as I can out of my head and into point form is my jumping off point. Having as much information on the page as possible is a good way for me to start.
Flow. Once I have a solid opening sentence or paragraph I can find a flow to the words. For There Is This Place a rhythm began quickly and the outline of the story was basically completed in a few hours.
Space. Artistically my physical space and my head space is extremely important. This also relates to my writing.I need to turn off the world and settle into a small space. I prefer quiet, maybe gentle music and a cup of tea. When doing art I need a large flat surface with all of my tools close at hand and laid out in front of me, so that I can easily choose the tools I know I will need.
Goals. I then set the goal of the writing or art session. I always set myself a goal before I begin and visualize the steps I need to take to get there. This helps keep me on track and pushes me through difficult times in the creation of a piece.
How do you continue your writing/artistic projects?
Talking to Myself. Once I have established a flow in my writing and I have the main ideas on the page I start a process that I call “Talking to Myself”. I re-read sections as well as the whole document out loud over and over again. For some reason hearing my own voice speaking my words assists me in narrowing down the problem areas and helps me move forward.
Fresh Eyes. Whether writing or creating art it is important for me to walk away for an hour or even a day and come back refreshed to reassess the project. I seek creative and editing advice from family and friends throughout the process as well. Fresh eyes always bring more to your work.
Celebrate. Throughout the process of creating a piece of work I have mini celebrations. When I begin to see things coming along, I usually do a little dance or give a fist pump and a say a quiet “YEESSSS!”.
Move. I need frequent breaks where I just move a little. I get up and walk around the kitchen or do a shimmy to the music playing. This helps get rid of tension I may be feeling about putting every mark in its rightful place and lets me celebrate what I have already completed.
Lists. I also keep a day planner, and create lists. My day planner keeps me organized and using my time efficiently. Checking off things on a list allows me to see a progression clearly. Seeing this progression is motivating and I once again celebrate every item crossed off my list.
How do you know a project is finished?
Follow Your Gut. When it comes to knowing when the project is complete I usually follow my gut. Artistically, if I feel that something is off I will put the piece of art on a wall where I will walk past it everyday. I leave it there until the day that I either feel satisfied that it is truly finished, or I know exactly what it is missing.
For Another Project. For the book I have had to be a bit tougher on myself. I have had to make some decision to cut things or just decide that they are done. When I do this, I file the idea in a box labeled “Another Project” so I don’t feel as though it is gone. It is just waiting for the project where it will serve a better use.
Trust yourself. Your gut is usually always right. Take chances. You never know what may be ahead of you. Let it come from your heart. When you put a bit of yourself into a project you create a connection of truth with your readers and/or viewers. Lastly, always celebrate little successes! When you appreciate the small moments, you live a happier and more successful life.