When my sweet friend Sophie asked me if I would like to take part in a blog tour where participants share a little bit about their writing process, I thought “What a lovely idea!” While writing is something very dear to my heart I’ve never spoken much about that here, so it sounded like a great conversation to have. I find people’s creative processes fascinating and often wonder what it is that drives others to share their stories through blogging. I loved reading Sophie’s post about how and why she writes the beautiful words published on her blog. So here I go…
What am I working on?
Aside from blogging here as usual and putting together our new Five Favourite Things and My Simple Life features, right now I’m finishing up my last couple of pieces for Kidspot. In the last few months I’ve had so much fun putting together a series of blog posts over there. Once that’s done I’m hoping to start working on some new creative wordy projects. They are just blurry snippets of ideas right now but hopefully, once I have the time and space to think about them properly, they will grow into something wonderful.
How does my work differ from others of its genre?
I don’t really think I have a genre. I suppose this blog would be placed in the “lifestyle” category but that’s not something we’ve intentionally cultivated. When it comes to blogging, I just write about whatever feels right in that moment. When I was a teenager I wrote a lot of angsty, emotional poems and short stories full of heartache. Later, I worked in publishing and most of my energy went into writing for work, which was very impersonal editorial style stuff. Now, here on the blog, my writing is somewhere in between those two styles. I try to write from the heart, and be authentic, honest, and real, without getting too self-involved or stuck in my own head. I probably don’t always get the balance right, but I try.
I have always written. My favourite teacher in primary school was a big believer in encouraging kids to use their initiative, so she used to give us half an hour each day where we could chose to do whatever we wanted. We had to do something productive (meaning we couldn’t just take a nap or play with toys) but we could read, work on art projects, do maths problems, or whatever else we pleased. I always, always wrote. When I got a bit older I imagined that being a writer for a magazine would allow me to indulge in my passion for words (and be very glamorous) so that became my dream. At uni I majored in journalism and minored in creative writing. I was lucky enough to get a job in magazine publishing straight out of uni, so we moved to Sydney for my new role as editorial assistant. It was while we were living in Sydney that Reubs and I began blogging, which opened up a whole new style of writing to me. Since I’ve never been good at keeping journals, I love that the words I record on our blog become like a little virtual time capsule. I don’t often look back at old posts because honestly, they make me a bit cringey, but I like just knowing they are there.
I can’t really explain why I’ve always felt the urge to write, I just know that I have. Writing helps me quieten some of the noise in my busy brain and allows me to get my scrambled thoughts in order. I also find the act of writing deeply cathartic. Sometimes I think I am better at expressing myself with words on a page than words spoken.
How does your writing process work?
Honestly, my writing process is rather chaotic and often accompanied by (self-inflicted) stress. I am a terrible procrastinator and tend to work best under pressure anyway, so I often leave things until the last minute and find myself scrambling come deadline time. Once I get into the zone I don’t like to be interrupted, so I generally write pieces all in one sitting. Instead of starting at the beginning and writing til the end, I usually start out by jotting down ideas in point form, then slowly build on them, edit and refine them, rearrange them into something cohesive and linear, and edit the whole thing again. I write in much the same way as I read magazines, flicking all over the place and a pausing to expand on whatever catches my fancy. Often I’ll be writing one point when I’ll randomly think of something connected to another point so I’ll jump forwards or backwards. If I don’t jot a thought down as soon as it pops into my head I’ll lose it, so I’ve learnt to just go with the chaos. Sooner or later it all comes together.
Photo by This Brown Wren.
I’m passing the blog tour torch on to lovely Steph of This Brown Wren. Steph’s gorgeous blog and the beautiful words she shares there never cease to inspire me, so I can’t wait to hear about her writing process when she shares her post next week.
Maybe you’d like to share a little about how and why you write too?