I’ve been working on some short fiction lately. Yesterday, I revised a story that I love. Today, I’m revising another. These are both horror stories, which is the only thing I want to write lately.
I cut my writing teeth on flash fiction, which taught me so much about word economy and fitting a ton of characterization and world building into a small space. If you’re feeling stuck with your writing, short stories and flash fiction are wonderful ways to jumpstart your creative engine again.
Woo Writing Shrine
I recently moved my laptop to a small side desk that’s perpendicular to my massive work table. I like writing on the smaller desk because it’s easier to focus. But I also like it because I have a sort of shrine to women who inspire me watching over my work.
The paintings of the tree, the woman reading, and the bear are my own work.
From the top going clockwise: Frida Kahlo, Georgia O’Keefe, Nora Roberts, Virginia Woolfe, Shirley Jackson. I also have a Saint Shirley candle on the desk and a skull Nicole Peeler gave me.
Ritual is important to me. It reminds me that my work is important enough to be honored and watched over.
But moving my writing to a smaller desk in a corner also sets my work apart as something that requires focus but also humility. Yeah, I know it’s a contradiction—how can it be both sacred and humble?
Aren’t all the best things both? Water and air are basic, but they’re also so important that without them we can’t live.
I often think about Stephen King’s quote:
“Life isn’t a support system for art. It’s the other way around.”
Writing is sacred because it helps me be both more fully human and connected to something larger than myself. Yet it is also a humble act because it’s just me and the alphabet trying to make a whole lot of nothing mean something.
What’s woo with you this week? Let’s talk about it in comments!