I recently read somewhere (completely unreliable) that J.K. Rowling once got fired from a job for daydreaming too much. It’s probably untrue, but I liked it. Made me feel like we have something in common.
No, I haven’t been fired for it, but I spend way too much time daydreaming. And I don’t just mean by The Man’s* standards. I’m constantly forgetting what I was supposed to be doing because my imagination has run off again, leading me away from the real world in the most wonderful and exciting ways. I eventually find my way back, but not always before I’ve burned supper or forgotten that I was supposed to move the laundry over to the dryer three hours ago.
Some writers call it research. I’m not sure I can even do that when most of it will never make it into a story. Oh, sure, letting my mind wander has taken me to wonderful places and introduced me to characters who I have written about. The voices in my head have provided random bits of dialogue that have showed up in stories. But there are worlds, plots, and people in my head who are never going to step out of it, either because it’s not a genre I care to write, the material’s a little too close to my heart, or the story just doesn’t have the kind of legs it needs to survive being exposed to the world.
I think that’s okay, too. Call it rehearsal. Call it exercise for that imagination muscle, or letting my muse stretch his legs. Call it being open to possibilities.
Whatever you call it, I think I’m going to stick with it. It makes me happy, and I think that’s worth burning the occasional pancake for.
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*”Damn the Man. Save the Empire.” -Lucas
April 4th, 2014 at 8:44 am
I still call it research. Or, if you’d rather, I’ll return to my artistic roots and call it sketching instead. Artists sketch all the time. Quick little drawings, pieces of things, that will never make it into a finished work. They do studies–multiple drawings of eyes, or fingers, or tiny little details. That’s all you’re doing. Sketching. Keeping the brain limber. Examining details of things that you’ll need for the whole.
Yes, I can justify chocolate cake for breakfast, too. 😉
April 4th, 2014 at 8:58 am
We should form a partnership and start a business, charging a small fee for justifying things. I’m no slouch, either. 😀
Sketching is a great way to look at it!
April 4th, 2014 at 9:00 am
Let’s do it! We’ll meet for coffee to discuss the details.
April 4th, 2014 at 9:02 am
SWEET! *joins in eating cake for breakfast, because cake is exactly like doughnut, and that’s totally breakfast. See also: the Cosby Justification*
April 4th, 2014 at 9:09 am
Exactly. *said around mouthful of dairy product and antioxidant rich dark chocolate combined in cake like substance*
April 4th, 2014 at 9:10 am
I wish I really had cake. You’re a bad influence.
*sips coconut oil-slicked coffee*
April 4th, 2014 at 9:43 am
I don’t have cake either. Just a handful of Craisins.
April 4th, 2014 at 9:45 am
Not exactly the same…
Man, I’d kill for a frozen McCain’s Deep & Delicious chocolate cake right now.
LOOK WHAT YOU’VE DONE. *sobs*
April 4th, 2014 at 9:51 am
*Evil plan epic fail. …now wants chocolate cake*
April 4th, 2014 at 9:53 am
Hoisted with your own petard!
(I have been waiting so long to use that phrase…)
April 4th, 2014 at 10:01 am
What did you just call me?!!?
April 4th, 2014 at 9:24 am
This is exactly what my husband finds so frustrating about me. He doesn’t like burnt pancakes so he now does all the cooking. 🙂
April 4th, 2014 at 9:25 am
Sounds like a good deal to me!
April 4th, 2014 at 11:54 am
I’d wager that most writers are the same way. I know I am, and it’s one of the things I love the most about being me 🙂
April 4th, 2014 at 12:30 pm
I was accused of daydreaming too much as a child. I call it exercising the imagination. When I am writing, I scorch pots on the stove and ignore the laundry until it sours and has to be washed again. Those are the perils of being a writer. Sometimes I also forget to eat. It is not quite the same as going into a burning building to rescue or getting shot during a domestic deescalation, but then it is.
April 4th, 2014 at 12:32 pm
Yeah… my job’s not as dangerous as my husband’s, but it’s risky for my own health and sanity sometimes.
I don’t forget to eat for long, though. My body warns me by making me pass out. YAY ME! 😀
April 4th, 2014 at 4:14 pm
Wow what fertile imaginations you and your friends have. Daydreams too.
April 4th, 2014 at 7:11 pm
You guys make me so happy. A part of me is jumping up and down, cheering “Yay! I’m not the only one!” lol
I don’t often burn dinner, but there is laundry languishing in the dryer, and hubby has given up and has taken over dish duty. ;D
April 9th, 2014 at 1:26 am
I often burn dinner too. The saying in my house is, “if it ain’t burnt, it ain’t Mama’s!” And don’t get me started on how many times I have to rewash or fluff a load of laundry because I’ve forgotten about it and it’s turned sour or wrinkled. It’s amazing how quickly time passes when you’re daydreaming. 🙂