The red paint is peeling from the little makeshift well. The small door hangs crookedly on its hinges and the latch doesn’t completely close. The well is in danger of going dry, the only water still in the well is stagnant and still. I open the door and the smell of old water wafts into my face. The space is small and the ladder is rickety, but I climb to the bottom and there’s only a few inches of water covering the base of the well. In just a few weeks, it will be dry and there will be no chance of re-filling the well. The only way to have kept the well from becoming stagnant is for water to continually be flowing through it; there needs to be a constant stream of water.
When we write, we tend to get overly focused on output and forget the need for input. We generate content, we write posts, we brainstorm ideas, and write, write, write. The focal point of our craft is output, but if you keep up a constant stream of output for too long while forsaking the input. Don’t underestimate the need to replenish your thoughts and renew your perspective. A fresh point of view is invaluable.
If you are going to be writing with any regularity, you must be reading with even more regularity. That doesn’t mean that you have to finish a book. It also doesn’t mean that you have to read fiction, or conversely, non-fiction. I am just politely, yet strongly suggesting that you read something. You don’t have to finish a book, or even an article, just read it. Read it for the sake of injecting information into your brain and coaxing your imaginative neurons to once again fire away!
I’m not sure what you fancy as far as reading is concerned, but you do. You know which books draw you in and make you update your Facebook status to “Just one more chapter turned into seven more and THE END!”
Today’s Challenge: Today’s challenge is two-fold. First of all, I’d like you to pick a book to read this week. You don’t have to finish it by the end of the week. Heck, I don’t even care if you ever finish it. You aren’t reading to finish it, you are reading to refresh your brain and excite your perspective. This week, I want you to commit to read for ten minutes a day. It can be out of the same book, it can be articles in different magazines, whatever you want. Just read.
For the second part of the challenge, I’d like you to write about one of your favorite books. Why was it your favorite? Which character stole your heart? Perhaps the character made you cringe or caused you to ponder their actions. Tell me all about it over in the Facebook group.