The Exhausted Mind

Over the past week I’ve been working crazy overtime at work, which explains the sudden and unexpected hiatus from TheLibraryLife. It was unintentional and I definitely missed blogging! Unfortunately it was just one of those weeks where every night I came home from work exhausted and got up early the next day to do it all over again. I wish I could say that I came home and sank into a book to de-stress, but sadly that is not true. I tried, but I was so tired the words would go all wobbly and I just couldn’t focus.

What amazed me about this week is that somehow in my foggy state I managed to write. Yes, me, the queen of writing procrastination, somehow managed to write despite how tired I was. And honestly I don’t even really know how it happened. My boyfriend had put soccer on the TV (which means I was more or less just staring at the TV and not actually watching) and some random snatches of dialogue between two of my characters rolled through my head. My notebook was on the floor beside me so I picked it up and scribbled down the few sentences, then went back to watching TV. But it kept happening. All of these great snatches of conversation kept happening in my brain so I kept writing them down. And it wasn’t even the same section of dialogue, it was different scenes and different characters and different emotions, but somehow they kept popping into my mind and I kept writing them down.

I had made no effort to actively think about my story or my characters. I had made no effort to commit myself to the act of writing. Yet here was my brain, from somewhere deep beyond my exhausted state, supplying me with words and voices that I managed to capture. This past week I have written more than I have in the past month, and I have no explanation, but I am very happy. All I can say is that I am amazed at how our brains continue to work on things even when we are not actively focused on the problem.

This past week has also reminded me that as a writer, I need to constantly have that notebook beside me, or a laptop, or even a phone, so that I can jot down that brief burst of words to use later. Inspiration can happen anywhere, at anytime, and even the smallest collection of words can inspire great scenes.

Hopefully this upcoming week will not be so hectic and I can get back into my usual routine. Good luck to those participating in Camp NaNo this month! I’m looking forward to hearing about everyone’s experiences and writing processes so that I can continue to work on my own – for while I love being inspired when I’m super tired, I would rather not have to be exhausted to get any writing done! :)

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