I blame the Brisbane City Council bus service.
Getting home and back out in time for Tae Know Do training is tight at the best of times. I usually end up five to ten minutes late, but thankfully the instructor is flexible (no pun intended). This time the damn 114 bus never turned up. After 40min waiting, myself and another frustrated bus goer hoicked it to the Myer Centre to catch the 120 – which of course, was also late. At least it arrived. On the other end I had a 10min sprint to get to my house, change then race for the training hall. All in all I was just over 40min late for a 1 1/2 hour class. Now that would have been fine, but this particular, cold rainy Brisbane winter day, my muscles did not agree. I did some quick stretches, then tried to do a fast series of front kicks to warm myself up for sparring, on the fifth kick. Ouch!! I had torn my left calf muscle. My first muscle tear. Instant invalid. I’ve been hobbling around ever since (slight consolation is female sympathy, women now hold lift doors open for me:)).
So that got me thinking. OK. Warm-ups are important, especially if you have done a lot of training in a short period of time and your muscles are fatigued (which is what happened to me – too much training without enough rest trying to ‘get back into it’). Why should writing be any different?
I often chastise myself for sitting down at the computer and finding it hard to flick a switch into creative flow, like I should be some sort of creative machine – a literary Spock. But what about the warm-up?
Perhaps juggling a few adjectives? Lifting heavy metaphors or running a tight course through some tricky punctuation?
Take some new words that have caught your attention (this week mine all start with ‘p’ – pernicious, pusillanimous) and construct a few fun sentences. Try writing about something that has been teasing at your mind, maybe a few ideas, or describe something that caught your attention (absolutely awesome mist in Brisbane this morning. Looked fantastic across the trees of nearby Toohey Forest. The airports were closed).
How do you warm yourself up for writing? Or do you regularly tear your writing muscles and limp from paragraph to paragraph? Got any suggestions for fun writing warm ups?