My Creative Process

My mind races ahead of me at times, with ideas which at first seem easy and then leave me wondering how on Earth am I going to do that.

When I write my stories, the characters take centre stage and lead me down their own merry little paths, which I enjoy. They, the characters, put themselves in the midst of an array of weird and wonderful situations and then look at me, almost pleading, asking for help with moving them along. I try, but sometimes I simply have to leave them where they are as I cannot see a way forward for them as yet.

With my artistic creations I get an idea as to what I want to create, whether in paint, through the digital painting software, or even PowerPoint, and then start. And I then stop, looking at the blank space ahead of me.

It must be the same for both writing and art to get passed that initial block, although I’m not entirely sure whether it’s a case of just start and see what happens.

My initial idea’s there. The means to get that idea into some form of reality is there in front of me. And some kind of destination is there also, although said destination is an extremely fluid one.

But that first push is in a spongy grey area. It’s a soft stumbling block which lately has been holding me back with just a little more gusto than it used to. It absorbs the weakest of my ideas, and leaks out any feeble attempts of a start in a dribbling never-ending flow of self doubt. And this flow of self doubt gets in the way of my creative flow, bringing in turbulence, which further waters down the already fluid destination, splattering it into the mists of an increasingly murky future.

See what I mean? My mind – racing ahead again.

That future, as well as the blank canvas before it, isn’t set. It isn’t a solid unchangeable wall. It may appear murky or blank (depending on where one looks!) but it can be changed by the lick of a brush, the stroke of a pen or the click of a key on a keyboard. I just need to remind myself of that more often. It’s that sponge at the very beginning I need to focus on… to dissolve it away. It doesn’t matter if I create rubbish – the rubbish can be changed; amended; even re-done if needed. After all, that’s the creative process.

It’s a shame to be held back by a sponge, isn’t it? I think I should just dive in once again and see what happens.

DC’s Dawnstar

“George!”

“GEORGE!” Intense shaking followed.

“Uh… what…? Where? Mabel, what are you doing? It’s three o’clock in the morning. I’ve only just got to sleep.”

“George, someone’s broken into the shed.”

George sat upright in bed, still feeling sleepy. “The shed? What shed?”

“Your shed. Our shed. The garden shed. And it’s ten past one.” Mabel walked over to the bedroom window, wrapping herself in her dressing gown. “I heard a clattering and got up to look out, and I saw the hole. They’ve got in through the roof.”

“Through the roof? The door’s hanging off, Mabel. Why would they bother to climb up to the roof?”

“Oh, I don’t know. Come and ‘ave a look!”

George moaned as he climbed out of bed and walked across the bedroom to stand beside his wife. Through the light of next door’s faulty security light he could see the splintered hole in the roof of the shed.

“We’re in the middle of a street. Why would someone break into a garden shed in the middle of a street?” George was puzzled. “And I’m not too happy that they’ve chosen my shed.”

“It’s not as though there’s anything in it for starters!” Mabel scoffed. “Your bench is riddled with woodworm.”

“I’m going to see if they’ve taken anything.” George put on his dressing gown. “They’d best not have taken me watering can.”

“Why would they want your watering can?” Mabel laughed, and then stopped herself as she saw George putting on his slippers. “You can’t go down there, George Green. They may still be down there.”

“I’m going, Mabel. And I’m going to give ‘im what for.”

“But George. I’m going to phone our Sheila.”

“Mabel, what would phoning your Sheila do? By the time she gets here, he’ll be long gone.”

Mabel sighed as George left the bedroom and walked down the stairs. She stepped into her slippers and followed him.

George obtained a small torch from the drawer beside the fridge in the kitchen, and walked through the sliding door into the conservatory. Mabel linked his left arm as he unlocked and opened the door out into the back garden. “Go back inside, Mabel. I can deal with this.”

“Nonsense, George. I’m coming with you, and that’s that.”

Outside, the night air was cool. The sky was partly cloudy, but several bright stars could be seen shining above. The crescent of the moon shone brightly too, giving both George and Mabel a clear view of the hole in the shed’s roof. The security light from next door switched off as they stepped outside.

“Mabel. They’ve smashed their way through that. It must have taken them ages. It would’ve been quicker for them to peel back the planks.” George shone his torch over to the shed. “Why didn’t you wake me earlier? We could’ve scared them off before this.”

“George Green, I woke you as soon as I ‘eard the noise. I went to the window, saw the hole and woke you. There and then. Don’t go saying I was lying there all night without doing anything.”

They walked across the garden to the shed.

“I’m not saying anything like that, Mabel. I’m just saying it would’ve taken them ages to make a hole that size by knockin’ it through.”

“Well it didn’t. It was like a quick whoosh, is what it was. A whooshing clatter. They probably just fell through the rotting wood.”

“Right then. Now shush. We don’t want to let them know we’re here.” Mabel glared at George as he shone his torch onto the padlock on the shed door and turned the key. “I mean, if they’d have just tried the door at least, they’d have seen the key was in the lock. They needn’t ‘ave gone to the bother of climbing up to the roof and force themselves in that way.”

George pulled the rotting door outwards, and he and his wife were greeted by the familiar and comforting musty aroma from within. A small crockery plant pot fell out of the door and George bent to pick it up, rubbing his back as he did so. “This cold is doin’ nothing for me back” he moaned.

They both peered inside the shed as George shone the torch around. Garden tools and plant pots were strewn all over the place, but nothing else seemed out of the ordinary. Debris covered the floor and large splinters of wood lay scattered across the top of the workbench.

“There!” Mabel shouted. “Behind the bench. They’re asleep!”

George shone his torch over the figure who lay stunned between the bench and the shelves. A rake and a hoe lay across them. “They were after my watering can. Look!” George directed the torchlight to the rusted can under the intruder’s left arm.

“George!” Mabel rolled her eyes.

They both stepped into the shed, taking care not to trip over the contents that were scattered everywhere. George shone his torch at the figure’s face. They could both see her eyes slowly opening and closing. They could also hear a faint groaning.

“George! It’s a girl!” Mabel realised. “She must’ve been freezing, looking at how she’s dressed, and wanted to get some warmth in our shed. Poor thing.”

“Mabel, there’s a bus stop outside, with a shelter. It isn’t as though she could see our shed from the street. She was after my waterin’ can. That’s all there is to it.”

“George! Even if she did want your watering can, it looks like she’s hurt. We can’t leave her there like that. Let’s see if we can get her inside and give her a cup of tea.” Mabel took the torch off George, and moved the light away from the girl’s face, stopping mid-sweep. “Are they feathers?”

“Mabel, they’re wings. Look.”

“George? Is she an Angel? She must be an Angel. Look at her face.”

“Mabel, why would an Angel want my watering can?”

“Oh, George. Let’s get her inside. She needs help.”

—————–

I’m trying to get my mind back into writing again, but thought, just for once, I would have a go a creating a piece of fan-fiction. Being a long time comic book and superhero fan, I thought I’d have a go at writing something featuring a character who isn’t as well known as others, and opted for DC Comics’ Dawnstar. Dawnstar was created in the mid to late 1970s by Paul Levitz and Mike Grell, and she is set in the far distant future. Credit where credit’s due!

I thought about what would happen if Dawnstar crashed into our time period, into the back garden of a normal everyday couple, and tried to write it like the first scene from a movie or TV show about the character.

I feel uneasy about writing using other peoples’ characters, but as my characters have a tendency to speak to me and tell me what to write, lately, Dawnstar was doing the same. It goes without saying that I hold no rights to the character, and Dawnstar is the only character that doesn’t come from the depths of my mind. The Greens, the garden shed and the watering can are all figments of my imagination.

The question now is… will the characters speak to me further?

Six

It’s One Word Sunday yet again, and this week, Debbie’s theme is Six.

I must admit to struggling a little with this one, and was almost about to use the dice again from a previous One Word Sunday post, when I had a burst of inspiration.

Take a look at my photo yet again, and see if you can work out how it links to the word six. It’s obvious, really.

Can’t see it? Then that’s the right answer! In this photo, six is the number of feet you can’t see, although there are six there!

Sigh. One of these days I’ll have a proper photo for Six er One Word Sunday. Visit Debbie’s site on the link above where you’ll see actual proper ones.

I Don’t Half Write Some Twaddle!

I woke early today.

I had an urge to continue a story I’d started on the blog some time ago in the past, only I couldn’t remember anything about the story where I could just continue writing now… I had to find it to get the details so I could pick up the pieces.

I got myself settled and comfortable, and started looking through each of the posts through the archives.

I’ve changed the theme back to an older one I used to use on the blog, and it doesn’t seem to work very well with mobile devices. Well, it doesn’t work well with my mobile device… some of the pictures have been stretched to be almost a mile tall, so my searching then required a lot of scrolling. And clicking the ‘older posts’ option became a bit monotonous, as I have the theme set to only show five posts per page.

I remember writing the post a while ago, so started my search in December 2019. I went through each and every post, backwards, scrolling, trying to see anything that would jump out at me about the post. I knew I knew the post, I just couldn’t remember the details.

Pins and needles developed in my hands. My legs went dead. My eyelids became heavy, and by the time I reached January 2016 the temperature on the battery on the mobile had reached an all time high I thought it was about to explode. Luckily for us both, a red message popped up on screen warning me I only had 15% of battery power remaining.

I had to end the search there; although one key word sprung to mind: ‘morning’.

I searched for morning (after searching all morning!!!), and found my post in March 2020. It was a self contained story which didn’t need adding to: Nova Luna.

And sometime soon, not now, I’m going to expand on that story. After this morning it would be a waste of time not to!

(Posted for Six Word Saturday)