A Breath of Fresh Air: Thursday’s Children

thurschilbadgejpgA weekly blog hop
where writers get together
to discuss what inspires them!

Farewell long hot summer, winter’s icy breath has been making itself felt in the Land of the Long White Cloud this week. We’ve had a dusting of snow on the Tararua Ranges, a southery blowing straight off the South Pole, and I’m pretty sure I turned blue during the school run the other day.

However one of my favourite things about the change of season is it really wakes you up to the world around you. And today was one of those rare days when despite the frosty start, the sun came out and we had clear blue skies and that gorgeous soft winter light that makes everything glow.

Tararua Ranges from Paraparaumu Beach, Kapiti Coast.

Sometimes the stars do align in your favour, because this morning was the first day in months I didn’t have anything scheduled. So I dropped the kids at school and headed out onto the walking tracks. I didn’t see a soul. Just a couple of hours of me, the birds and the view. And it was amazing.

Back in February, Kate Frost posted about Taking Inspiration From Nature. It reminded me that as writers we sometimes need time and space to blow out the cobwebs, take a breath and really look around us. I’d like to say I came home and wrote up a storm, but real life was waiting. A meeting at the Rest Home (my mother-in-law has advanced Alzheimer’s), the children had sports and scouts, and tonight I just had to watch the final episode of the latest Dr Who Series (yes we’re a bit behind here – but major, major kudos to Steven Moffat!!!).

But word count aside, I have a bright new colour palette ready to mix into my story. The sound of footfalls on a dirt path; the unrelenting sting of thorns catching in your clothing; the feel of a light breeze against your skin. And I  know precisely how one character feels when she is able to get away and find that exact solitude.

There’s nothing like a breath of fresh air to stir the soul and freshen up a story. Even if it is blowing straight off the Antarctic!

Many thanks to both Rhiann Wynn-Nolet and Kristina Perez for hosting this blog hop. If you want to join us, or check out what’s inspiring everyone else, click on this linky.

28 thoughts on “A Breath of Fresh Air: Thursday’s Children

  1. Ha, we’re entering steamy summer here and soon I will be longing for that icy breath (but from the Arctic). I go for walks on the beach or in the woods nearly every day. They’re very restorative and inspirational. Thanks for sharing the beautiful photo and I’m sorry about your mum-in-law, it’s a dreadful disease. Hugs.

    1. I always feel a bit out of sync with the whole weather thing… I usually in the mornings when it’s dark (before my husband goes to work) – so I have to stick to the roads. Just taking the time to appreciate the surroundings was, as you put it – restorative as well as inspirational. I must make it habit to soak it all in.

      And yes Alzhiemer’s is a terrible disease, but it certainly makes you appreciate the good times when you have them.

  2. That’s really lovely Raewyn. It’s funny to think you’ll soon be in the depths of winter whilst here in the UK it’s finally beginning to get warmer after an exceptionally cold spring. 🙂

    1. Well if our summer was anything to go by, you should be in for a good one! At least in the UK I can usually picture what kinds of conditions you are – always the opposite season and about the same o’clock but in the opposite pm… And yet the internet makes us feel so much closer!

  3. What a beautiful post. I tend to forget you’re heading towards winter down under 😉 I’m glad you had some time to yourself this week. It’s always important for us writers, to have the opportunity to think and plot alone. Hope you have a great week!

    1. Thanks – it’s weird that it’s not officially winter because the wind has been icy. Fortunately the last few days have been sunny too and I love those. I agree, I think I’m starting to get my head back in the game and am hoping June is going to be a high word count month (finally ready to leave the edits for the time being).

      And have a great week yourself!

  4. ” . . . we sometimes need time and space to blow out the cobwebs, take a breath and really look around us.” Oh, yes. Absolutely. I’m going to try hard to remember that this week. Thanks. 🙂

  5. So, not only is the time thing totally whack, so are the seasons. As you head into winter, we head into summer. Theoretically. 😉 Must remember to pay attention to that when we get the portal built.

    1. So many practical considerations to take into account when constructing this portal, the timezone, the weather, how it will cope with our completely different accents. Did you know kiwis are notorious for not sounding out our vowels. The result is comparatively clipped… Would hate to mess up any voice commands. (We will have voice commands in the portal?).

      1. Voice commands are a must. Never thought about the accents, dang it. Whose in charge of the VC module? Because they’ll have to make darn sure they account for voice variations.

  6. Love this! So strange to think you’re having your fall; it’s springtime in California right now…

    I’ve noticed my writing changes with the seasons, too. During the winter, I gravitate towards colder settings and imagery, whereas anything I write during the summer has a gritty, humid feel to it- at least, it does in my mind 😉

    Happy autumn!

    1. Yes it hasn’t felt like much of an autumn at all this year. Straight from an unseasonaly long summer into a very cold snap. I agree about the writing changing with the seasons. I tend to get more done in winter too, mainly because I want to hole up and lose myself in the world. Summer has so many distractions. I often edit in summer…

  7. I’m very jealous of where you live, Raewyn, what with mountains and the sea close by. I’m so glad you managed to get a couple of hours to yourself to just walk, think and enjoy such beautiful surroundings. Bliss.

    1. It was actually, and I am going to make a habit of enjoying what’s right on the doorstep. We are pretty blessed living here. Although to be fair the Tararua’s aren’t really ‘proper’ mountains, just very big hills. We don’t get much snow down at sea level, but we often get it on the ranges over the winter. Although from the photos you’ve posted when you and Frodo have been out – pretty special where you live too!

      1. For living in a city it’s not bad at all to have beautiful open spaces within walking distance of our house. ‘Big hills’ and sea are just as good. 😉

  8. Very beautiful post, Raewyn. I love this:

    “…The sound of footfalls on a dirt path; the unrelenting sting of thorns catching in your clothing; the feel of a light breeze against your skin. And I know precisely how one character feels when she is able to get away and find that exact solitude…”

    Thanks for sharing.

  9. A step outside is always the cure for a bout of writer’s block! I feel most inspired when I head up north to go camping in the wilderness of Ontario, Canada. The fresh air, summer breeze, and amazing views always fuel a whole slew of ideas.

    Thanks for sharing!

    1. Sounds amazing – there is something in that warm summer breeze that gets the creative juices flowing. Although right now there’s nothing warm about the breeze at all. Will need to rug up before I go out today!

    1. Thanks Paula, I hope you get some time to get out in it too. I’m thinking the next few weeks will be fun – I think I’m finally working out how my stuck story will become unstuck!

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