Drafting: “To You, the Making”

Several weeks ago, I rearranged one of the end tables in our living room to look like this:

I like decorating with books, so even though I’ve slimmed down my entire collection to just two shelves (read how to here), every flat surface in our apartment has at least one or two books on it. The Writer’s Block book was a gift from, I think, my father sometime ago. Last night, my husband picked it up and started flipping through it. Though I’ve owned this book for a while, I’ve never thought to use it when I was stuck in an endless spiral of “I DON’T KNOW WHAT TO WRITE! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!”

My husband flipped open to the following prompt:

Write a story in the form of a love letter.

That was enough for me to get up early this morning and try to write a poem. Thankfully, it was successful, though I didn’t end up using that prompt (but isn’t it a great one?).

For any of you that have had the pleasure of watching Waitress, you know some of the voice-overs turn into bitterly honest, but charming monologues addressed to the speaker’s unborn child. Here’s an example of one:

Dear baby,
If I was writing you a letter, it would probably sound something like an apology.

A lot of the monologues focus on the speaker’s worries about being an unfit mother, so my own poem ended up following a similar vein. This future mother thinks about her own mother:

“My mother had paddles screwed on at the wrists…
one of ’em could knock a lip so hard, it’d burst.”

The speaker then wonders if she’ll also get paddles, if having the baby will change her into a monster.

Right now, I’ve been so bogged down with life, that I’m just trying to play whenever I write. So, if I need to pull in more magical stuff to entertain me, so be it.

What do you do to re-energize the writing (and the desire to write) when it gets old and musty?

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