Today is the last day of my festive holidays and I feel very grateful to have booked a long break from work as it was much needed. I caught Covid (or more like it caught me, as I’ve been running from it all this time!) at the start of December and I exited 2022 feeling a bit burnt-out. So I was very happy to enter into what I like to call my ‘Hibernation Holiday’ (not for the whole time – I did enjoy socialising with family and friends some days!), where I prioritised reading lots, binge-watching Netflix (with some cheesy Christmas films in amongst it all), going out walks locally, and eating lots of chocolate. And although I didn’t do any writing I used the time for reflection, and thinking about what’s next.
A couple of my favourite Christmas presents are in the pictures on this post. At the top and below are snapshots from the fabulous and inspiring booklet my Mum, Rosemary, crafted for me (when my Mum started making these for friends I put in a request!). I love the thoughtful quotes, images and poetry, with plenty of space to pen my own thoughts and musings throughout.
A nice companion to this is the book ‘The Way of The Fearless Writer’ by Beth Kempton. (Also gifted to me from my Mum – you can read a recent post from my Mum here where this book gets a mention, along with other great books focusing on the craft of writing)
I’ve enjoyed doing a read-through to absorb Beth’s insights into how her knowledge of ancient Eastern Philosophy has influenced her writing life and how it can be used to shape our approach to writing. I particularly liked the section where she talks about how our writing shifts between various states (and goes on to describe each: Gaseous, Liquid and Solid in Part Two of the book). I like the reminder that we sometimes need to write without censor in the gaseous state, to allow words to get on the page and who cares if these don’t make sense to anyone but us, as no one should see them anyway at this stage. I’ve filled a notebook with some quotes as reminders of key points from the book, and will then go back through it to complete the writing exercises.
: ‘Allow Everything. Write Anything. Share Nothing.’ (the three rules of Gaseous writing pg 100)
I’m going into 2023 with no big pressure writing goals – my biggest priority in this area is to allow myself time to be creative and enjoy myself, and send some words out into the world and see what happens.