Waxing Crescent — Working Practice

Intrinsic motivation

Okay, things are starting to yang up, the moon is beginning to fill in, but only just. There’s not much push behind us, so we’re fuelling ourselves primarily with internal resolve, self belief and self motivation (what they call being intrinsically motivated in Sports Psychology).

Some of the thinking we did in the new moon phase should help us with this. We know this story is worthwhile. We intend to write it.

What we’re COMMITTING to now, is the PRACTICE of actually DOING IT.

The moon is in Aries

This is actually really handy — if we channel it properly. On the one hand, Aries is a pretty yang sign. And we want the yang. We want to just push forward with this thing, get some momentum.

However, I got vaguely formal with this bit and decided to do some research, so I had squiz at my copy of MOONOLOGY by Yasmin Boland. She says the downside of an Aries moon is the possibility of getting sidetracked in argument.

In this case, I think the worst argument you could get into would be one with your right brain. So, next point …

This phase is about the left side of your brain

That’s what you’re aiming for. Be conscious of it, and try to protect it.

If this is new terminology for you, in brief, the left side of your brain is a term that encompasses intuitive creative practice (at it’s best, it’s kind of blissful — that sense that the words are coming from somewhere else, or you’re not even really conscious of the words, it’s just pure story). The right side of your brain is more critical, concerned with logic and reasoning. (Research has debunked literal sides of the brain as a thing, but it’s a handy terminology for different working states, so I continue to use it.)

We use BOTH sides of the brain in the creative writing process. So, it’s a question of which part you need and when.

The right side of your brain WANTS TO PROTECT YOU. It does not want you to spend all your energy on this thing that might FAIL.

But at this point, it’ll only get in the way.

Recommendation: THE INNER GAME OF TENNIS  as some extra reading on this. This thin little book from the seventies changed my writing and surfing life (so, it’s not really a book about tennis).

Another handy reference is a book that my grandmother had when I was a kid, DRAWING ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF THE BRAIN.

The right side of the brain is ultimately cautious and tends to overthink. It’s perfectionist. It gets in the way of PROGRESS. We are trying to turn it off, so we can turn up and work on something that won’t be right without judgement. The job of a first draft is to be wrong. That’s why there are other drafts. Or, if that’s too depressing for you — the job of a first draft is to help us fill in our story.

Pen and paper

I am still working with pen and pencil to encourage this. It takes away the pressure to be perfect. It’s a handy shortcut way of signaling to myself that this is obviously only a draft. Mere marks on the page. Progress.

Also, I’m basically sketching out scenes at this point, and doing it on pen and paper allows for more flexibility. Say, if I wanted to mind map something or whatever.

Right, let’s make a COMMITMENT