Three days in the country in an old farmhouse with stone walls 3 feet thick.
Two writer friends (thank god--writing is a hard, lonely business).
Brand new drafting on a new and unformed novel after months of revision and line edits on an almost-done novel.
How do I do this again?
One of the friends suggested paint.
So I painted. Mostly as a way to put off actually writing.
I have zero expectation of mastery with this art form, and that, obviously, is what’s liberating about it. I really can just make crap, because I know nothing about painting, crap is the only thing I’m capable of, and I don’t care, because I’m not a painter. I lost myself in it--in the colours, the texture of the paper, the tactile, physical action of dipping brush, squeezing colours, stroking the brush along the page.
I started winding words into the painting. A voice came out.
And I had it. The voice. I picked up my notebook immediately and I began writing.
It wasn't easy, exactly. But I stayed with it for the whole 3 days--the notebook, the pen, the voice--and I'm proud of myself for that.