Whatever youâ€™re working on, keep going.
I talk a lot about showing up to the page. Itâ€™s kind of like a train going from station to station. It runs a course, stays on track, gets to destinations. Of course, sometimes they get derailed and so do we.
But if you donâ€™t show up, you probably arenâ€™t going to write anything.Â MyÂ favorite Â time toÂ show up to the page was after my daughter left for school. Coffee freshly poured, breakfast over, dishes clean and a walk in before 9 a.m. I ran with that for a long time. I wrote a lot. But then,after a period of years, boredom had set in. I needed character studies. I took a job. Then another. And another. I met interesting people.
All of the jobs I took offered me something in the way of character and scene development that you just canâ€™t get by visiting an office or store. I love to write vignettes. You can do this too. It’s a sketch of someone you see in real life.
Where will you be today? What interesting person might you run across today? In one place, there was a disturbed woman who would go through the parking lot taking pictures of license plates. If you looked at her, not confronted her, looked at her, sheâ€™d start screaming. I donâ€™t know what her issues were, but at some point, she mightÂ come in handyâ€¦
If you work with the public, you have a treasure trove of people to pull characters from. What might you see on your way to work? Running an errand for a former boss, I pulled up to a stop light. In the bright, bubblegum pink car next to me was a bearded dude with tattoos, smoking a cigarette with a cap on who looked like a bouncer in the tough section of town. I donâ€™t know if the car was his or not, but clearly, he was secure driving it. I wish I knew the real story. I donâ€™t, so I can make one up.
Occasionally, I see a one man band. If you can, a conversation adds interest.
Keep your eyes open for facinating things like this that are â€œprompts from real lifeâ€. Theyâ€™re great warm-up exercises and a kickstart if youâ€™re circling writers block.