Writing in Paradise: Final Days


Gotta love a bridge decorated with flowers

It was March 16th when I returned to Adelaide from Fiji after completing Jan Cornall’s Breakthrough writing course, so it seems a bit redundant to now go through what I did in the last couple of days of a course I completed three months ago. So much has happened since then, but I do want to mention some exercises in the final session that were very useful:
  •      create a writing timetable
  •         write down what you’re prepared to give up for your writing (there’s always something)
  •         what are your obstacles and how will you overcome them.


I must confess that despite creating a writing timetable, I haven’t managed to stick to it. I’ve made lots of notes and thought a lot about what I want to write and how I will write it, I’ve visited art galleries, jotted down conversations and ideas, and while all of that will feed into my work, there has been an awful lot of procrastination on my part. Where I have been successful is not beating myself up about this (too much) – there’s only one thing to do and that is get back on the horse.

So today I achieved double my daily writing target of 500 words by beginning with an improvisation that will feed into a current story; I also drew up a new writing timetable; and revisited what I’m prepared to give up for my writing (fyi, it’s alcohol and social obligations during the week). I reminded myself of the 10% inspiration, 90% perspiration equation and got re-inspired by reading those quotes that go something like: show up, show up, show up, never never never never give up. And I was also reminded of a something an ex-junkie told me years ago when I was trying to give up smoking (took me 10 years to kick that habit); he said if you do go back to smoking, be kind to yourself and start the giving-up process again. I reckon it’s the same with my writing practice. When I stop the good and necessary practice of writing regularly, I will be kind to myself, and begin again. Both of those things are important.

And finally, since I got back to Adelaide I have been mentoring young writers at Urban Myth Theatre Company. I love doing this and have successfully used some of Jan’s techniques and exercises to help them write new material for their plays. Win. Win.

C x

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