Sunday, November 15, 2009

Group Recharge

Photo by Charlyn W
In last week's post, Robin gave us all permission to step back from social media as needed, and learn to listen to the needs of our inner selves. I'd like to expand on that permission and offer us all a week off from promotion in general, so that we can fill up our stores. I'd love to have you join me!

When I'm recharging, I need a break from people, from noise, and from schedules-- but I never need a break from words. I crave them, all kinds of them. I have some of my favorite words stenciled in a few places in my house. If I lived alone and was not trying to be a considerate spouse, I would probably have many more. I would happily turn my walls in giant canvases for words-- words that inspire me, ones that never fail to stop me in my tracks, and words that make me smile. (For some fun ideas, check out Wall Words. Said spouse's eyes roll back in her head when she sees me looking at their catalogs. Prefers her words confined to books for some reason.)

I've been wanting to put together a collection of inspired thoughts about introversion for the longest time. I have not been able to find as many as I'd like, and a majority of them sound as if they were written very long ago, with an awful lot of doth-ing and goeth-ing. And by mostly about men, it seems. Surely, there have been some contemporary musings on introversion as well! So, for those of you who would rather not think about promotion this week, I'd love to invite you on a word-treasure hunt. I am looking for words to honor and inspire the contemplative in us each. Since you are mostly all writers, please feel free to send original quotations . My all-time favorite is the one from Ursula LeGuin, which we have had in our sidebar since day one at SVP.

Hardly anybody ever writes anything nice about introverts. Extroverts rule. This is rather odd when you realise that about nineteen writers out of twenty are introverts. We are being taught to be ashamed of not being 'outgoing'. But a writer's job is ingoing. --Ursula K. LeGuin

Here are a couple more that I love:

Conversation enriches the understanding; but solitude is the school of genius.
--Ralph Waldo Emerson

I would rather sit on a pumpkin, and have it all to myself, than be crowded on a velvet cushion. -- Henry David Thoreau

Don't you think this second one would be nice on a living room wall? :-)
If you submit a quotation, we will enter you in a drawing for Rebecca Stead's phenomenal book When You Reach Me (Wendy Lamb Books), which I read while I was recharging this weekend. Read in one long, admiring bite.

Another great way to recharge is to reflect on all that you have accomplished vs. worrying about all that you need to get done. It is essential that we each master the skill of being present in real time. We all spend entirely too much energy traipsing through our past, or speed-skating a trajectory to the future. In doing that, we miss the vibrancy of N-O-W.

So let's pop the cork on a bottle of bubbly and have one of our Milestone Mondays. We'd love to have you share some of the good work that you've been doing, fun news, encouraging rejections, progress on your NaNoWriMo WIP, whatever you feel like telling us about. Since we are in our recharge mode, rather making a noisy ruckus with clapping, we're going to start a giant stadium wave for you! Since Robin and I are on the West Coast, we'll lead off-- ready, Robin? Here we go000OOOOOO!

Hope you all find a deeply satisfying way to fill your bucket this week. All the way to the brim!

Mary Hershey


PJ Hoover said...

I've been making some sweet progress on revisions for a WIP. I took time away from it and feel like it is so much stronger now because of it. I say it all the time, but there is nothing like time between revisions.

Okay, so no introvert quotes, but when I get one, I'll come back!

Anonymous said...

“The most potent muse of all is our own inner child.”
Stephen Nachmanovitch

“Writing is making sense of life. You work your whole life and perhaps you've made sense of one small area.”
Nadine Gordimer

As a teacher, the first one really speaks to me and reminds me to get to the heart of the character. The second quote reminds me that I don't have to be ALL, just do one PORTION well.

Marjorie Light

laurasalas said...

Two of my favorite quotations re solitude are:

"Contact with other people does not lead to art; it leads to conversation." --Robert Bly

"Poetry, like crime, can only be accomplished in absolute privacy and secrecy." --Franz Wright

(I don't agree with them all the time, but I do think they hold a kind of essential truth.)

Milestone Monday: I'm starting my third chapter book rough draft as part of NaNoWriMo today. I don't know if I'll hit 50,000 words or not, but I'm finally exploring this form I've wanted to work on for a while!

Nancy Ancowitz said...

Let your quiet star twinkle!

Anonymous said...

In one part of HARRIET THE SPY, Ole Golly reads Harriet a bunch of quotes about solitude. I'm thinking they may be right up the SVP alley! (And I'm hoping you have a copy of HARRIET on your shelves.)

My milestones: I got an advance copy of my book (the hardcover, the real book!), and an article I wrote about the library blog challenge just came out in the SCBWI Bulletin.

Jennifer Hubbard

Anonymous said...

I absolutely agree with you about the wall! I've been dreaming of that for some time as well. I have to admit that part of the desire is because I can never remember my favorite quotes, and write them down on scraps of paper, which I lose. Can't lose a wall.

Mary Hershey said...

Hi, PJ-- glad the "cooling time" for your WIP has been profitable. :-)

Marjorie, Laura, Nancy, thanks so much for the great quotes. Most excellent.

Laura, best of luck on your NaNoWriMo project!

Jennifer, appreciate the lead about Harriet and Ole Golly. I'll take a look. Didn't remember that. And, how wonderfully exciting about your ARC!!! Can't wait to read your article in the Bulletin, too. :-)

Too funny, Anony, about not being able to lose a wall. :-)

Always love hearing from the tribe!

Mike Jung said...

Ooh, I'm late to this post (and I already have a copy of WHEN YOU REACH ME so if the contest is still on, please give it to someone else!) but I wanted to add a quote.

Solitude is the place of purification. (Martin Buber)

Anonymous said...

I have changed my mind about that line--it should read "Poetry, like crime or prayer, can only be accomplished in absolute privacy and secrecy."

Sabrina said...

I didn't sign up for NaNo, but I'd planned to write with that same goal in mind. It took most of the month before I even started writing, but I am, finally. This is a brief trip around the blogs, though, to get in the mood (there it is, my fingers are tingling--in a good way!).

I'm sure I have tons of quotes about introversion, solitude and writing scattered throughout books and notebooks, but of course, I can't find them right now. Instead, I share a short favorite of mine (from before I ever started writing urban fantasy):

"Never moon a werewolf." -Mike Binders

Oh, well, here's one more, because we're readers: "The love of learning, the sequestered nooks, And all the sweet serenity of books." -Henry wadsworth Longfellow

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