Last year I opened up and shared a bit of my writing. Since then I've gotten more brave in wanting to talk about my writing, and not just keep it to myself. Am I throwing my words around for everyone to read? Not quite, but it is something I am becoming more comfortable talking about. Sometimes I need that feedback from my peers, and other times I love to listen to those who do write, what their struggles may be and how they work through them.
I go through spurts where all I want to do is write, and other times writing feels like the furthest thing from my mind. During those moments when I do feel like writing, I don't shy away from it. I'll open my current writing project, or perhaps dabble with a new idea, and just let my thoughts and imagination run wild. It's quite fun, actually.
One thing I've found to be true about my writing (and also about what I read), is my connection to the setting. When I can visualize a scene, right down to the temperature of the air and the smells that float by, it sparks something in me and I can place myself inside the story. If you know me, then you know how much I adore a story set during the summer months. There's just something about it that has always played up my imagination. So I thought, why not write a story set during the summer? And so, that's become my latest project. It's still very, very new, but I am having fun with where it's going so far.
And yes, it's a summer romance. Would you expect something different? haha
I recently heard a published author speak about their settings, and whether they use real places, or make up their own. I found this interesting because there are pros & cons to using both. I write contemporary stories, so the places I think up could be real. Are they actual destinations on a map? Not exactly. I like the idea of my settings to be inspired by places I've been to, but not necessarily be that exact place. It's more fun to tweak it and make it my own.
Here's a tiny excerpt of what I'm working on currently:
Stepping out onto the deck, I glance around at the familiar surroundings. Weathered planks stretch out under my feet, beckoning me forward. I walk across the deck and down the few steps that open up to a small patch of grass. It definitely needs to be mowed, so I make a mental note to grab some gasoline for the lawn mower while I'm in town tomorrow.
The air hangs loose just over my head, slowly drifting downward to settle in the tall grasses around my bare legs. I imagine snakes wrapping themselves around my ankles and paranoia sends me briskly to the boat dock just ahead. The water laps against the pilings, another familiar sound that I associate with summer spent here. Slipping out of my flip flops, I take a seat on the edge of the dock, letting my legs dangle over. The sun is setting just over the horizon in a burst of oranges and golds, creating shimmers of light as the sun touches the water's surface. As I take in the beauty around me, I let out a sigh. Finally, it feels like home.