Jo Blackwell Writer & Photographer Northampton

Jo Blackwell Inspiration Station

Trusting the Process

Trusting the Process

Trusting the Process

I’m currently by the beach, coming to the end of 10 days of self imposed solitude. Apart from a lunch and a visit to the cinema with new friends, I have spent my time walking along the beach, sleeping, doing a little yoga, meditating, preparing a compilation of blog posts called Oh Crap – I’m 50! A Journey from Fearful to Fabulous (Sometimes) for self publication next month and writing.

The last is, ostensibly,  my reason for being here. As you’ll know, if you follow this blog, there’s been a story in my head for the longest time Beachtimeand I knew it had to be written – if only to make space for something else! I used to make a reasonable living as a fiction writer, but it’s been the longest time. I’m rusty and it took several nail biting days to ease myself into the flow. I also don’t have a publisher – my former agent has retired and I no longer have any contacts – but re-establishing those is a separate story!

I say that writing is “ostensibly” my reason for being here, because I have reminded myself of something far more important in the process, and that is that I can trust myself. Why had I forgotten that?

On the first day, I took off my watch. On the second, I put down my phone. I began to eat when I was hungry, without checking it was “lunchtime”. I go to bed when I’m tired and I’m up and out of the door to watch the sun rise across the Atlantic. I stand with the waves lapping over my bare feet and open my arms wide to embrace the warm breeze and care not one jot that I probably look like a loon.

And I’m writing. The words are spilling out of my head and my heart, through my fingers and onto the screen. I’ve stopped staring at the blank page in panic and relearned how to trust the process. One day, I might do more walking or sleeping than writing. Another, I might forget to eat because what was actually happening the day before was the next chapter fermenting in the darkest recesses of my mind. (and boy, is it dark in there!)

How did I forget this? How have I lived so long without the utter joy of crafting a story and giving it life? It used to be my everyday. I’d forgotten how much I both hate – it’s work, people! – and love it.

I’ll be going home with at least a quarter of my first draft written. Life and business will get in the way, inevitably, but I’m damn sure that finishing this draft is going to be right up there on my priority list!

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