Digging in

Word count: 267                           Reading time: 1-2 mins. 

A ridge of high pressure slipped over Vancouver earlier this week and I groped my way into the sun-drenched garden, as blind as a mole. I raked the leaves from around the Japanese maple and found a buried treasure of vibrant crocuses and snowdrops pushing through last autumn's litter. Earth teach me renewal as the seed that rises in the spring says the Ute prayer.

I’ve uttered similar words more than once when lifeless prose filled the screen in front of me, when I felt stuck in an endless writing winter. It’s still cold outside but I’ve got a handful of story seeds to throw into my writing garden. Unfortunately I have little idea which will grow to dandelions and which to brilliant flowers. I’m in the conflict part of my creativity cycle  so I remind myself of the words of Madeleine L’Engle: “Inspiration usually comes during work, not before it.” I will sow them all and work to see which one grows to that magic beanstalk.

If I invest some sweat equity into a few ideas that don’t pan into anything interesting, it won’t be the first time. I have an entire folder of deleted scenes, unfinished short stories, and even a couple of stillborn novels. Every one of them has helped me hone my skills in its creation but sometimes a person has to ruthlessly cull the random growth, even when it’s the product of much loving labour.

What is growing in your creative compost now? How do you choose what to keep and what to dig back into the soil?

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Photo: Leonidtit