Kumihimo Beaded Necklace

Last week, when I was reading Illuminations by T. Kingfisher (aka Ursula Vernon), I came across a couple of lines that really spoke to me.  Rosa has just asked her uncle how an artist can replenish the “heart” that has gone into a drawing.

“You must feed your heart,” said Uncle Alfonso.  “With beautiful things and places you have never seen and books that bring you joy.  Then your heart will grow back and you can paint again.”

(Side note: While the book is ostensibly a middle-grade Fantasy/Horror novel, it actually has a lot to say about the various trials and tribulations of being a professional artist.)

While my art isn’t painting, I absolutely understood this.  Since I’ve been pretty worn out lately, it was a good reminder that I need to take time to recharge or I won’t be able to write, no matter how the deadlines loom.  Oh, I could put words on paper, but they would not be the right words or the best words.

In this day and age where social media, in particular, often treats writing or drawing or any other form of art as a sort of race—How many words did you write this week?  How many stories did you sell?  Did you make your deadline?—it is easy to forget the joy, the heart, and all the rest.

How do I recharge my creative energy?  For one, I read, as those of you who follow my Friday Fragments know.  I do various crafts.  My current “go to” is kumihimo with beads, but I’ve been feeling a desire to pull out my polymer clay.  I garden.  I play role-playing games, which for me are a great reminder that storytelling is fun.

Although I don’t really feel like going on a trip, I’ve resolved that as the weather improves, I’m definitely going to take time away from my desk to go to the Botanical Gardens and watch Spring unfold.  Time “wasted” won’t be wasted at all, because I’ll write better, and feed my heart from which all the good stories come.

It beats the alternative which Rosa’s grandma describes very well.  “…you will lie around and mope and pick at your food for days until your family is sick to death of it.”

How do you recharge after a hard week? 


3 Responses to “Recharging”

  1. James Mendur Says:

    “How do you recharge after a hard week?”

    After a HARD week, like small children, I go back to the story I know well, in which I can visit my friends and it all works out in the end.

    After a normal week, I seek new stories to read or watch.

    It’s been a hard few weeks.

  2. Louis Robinson Says:

    I sleep ’til noon, but before I start… oh, sorry, they cancelled that gig…

    ummm… mostly I simply made sure I managed to do something completely different, I guess, but it’s been over a decade since I had to work at that kind of job, and I’ve pretty much expunged the bad memories [we had a good deal of fun at it, too] so the only thing that sticks is not getting out of bed any sooner than I absolutely had to on Saturday.

    And what a beautiful collection of beads!

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