Sketches in ink – 14–33
Most of what I have written in the nineteen days since my last blog has been handwritten in flashes of inspiration with an urgent intensity to capture the thought before it skitters off again and gets lost in some pressing domestic chore or other.
I spent almost a month enjoying a wonderful holiday on the other side of the planet where it was hot and humid, only to have to resort to layers of clothing in order to confront the dual shock of the bracing cold and considerable workload upon returning home. For many days, I was not too sure I had landed back in the correct time zone after all. I had to get a grip.
I took this literally. I went back to basics. I wrote by hand the many lists and diagrams and doodles and scribblings I needed to find a good starting point for this year which I seemed to have started late. I know planners aplenty can be found online, but I needed physical grounding, and the sense of industry felt when a flurry of papers surrounds me in what cannot be described as a tidy process by any stretch of the imagination.
The imagination, of course, is an essential part of planning. Sparks fly when the pen hits the paper, and the sounds of rapid scratching seem to encourage more. The child in me has developed an inordinate fondness in recent years for pens of many different colours, but primarily purple and green. Some things are colour-coded such as the jobs list in my “day book” – as opposed to my paper diary – but others are written in a colour which may well be the standard black or blue based solely on my mood at the time.
Yesterday, I indulged in some coloured paper as a means to organise the different groups of activities on a recently acquired notice board, placed strategically where my eyes seem to drift when I day dream. I was busy cutting out another important blob of an idea to pin to the notice board, when all at once I had a breakthrough on the approach I needed to take in a persuasive marketing mailshot I have been struggling with.
The sheer excitement of the moment would have been lost if I had typed instead of writing it out, or if I had attempted to dictate it. The perfect idea was laid down perfectly on a few scraps of paper. Don’t bother trying to read my handwriting: this is just the draft. The final version will be made of much finer stuff!
I wonder how many others of you still use pen and paper for those ideas which simply cannot wait? I know what I do with my many pieces of paper. (I transfer them to electronic format as soon as I have recovered from the enormous creative energy expended scribbling.) What do you do with yours?
©2015, Allison Wright
I use my shopping list pad in the kitchen when I have an idea. My ideas are usually pretty ephemeral. If I don’t pop them onto paper straight away they disappear. I often start a writing project with four of five bits of scrap paper around my computer. But at least they are all in one place. My shopping list pad is much thinner now because of all the sheets I have pulled from it!
You must have a small, neat hand, Lucy; my large unruly script could not cope with the confines of a shopping list pad. I usually write my shopping list on a sheet of A4. 🙂
Not so – my writing is near illegible but a scribbled note is enough to capture the thought. The thoughts then get put into words later.