A few weeks ago I was writing my book daily, in a disciplined way, but after a few weeks, my thoughts bogged down in the trivia of cliches, ideas went wonky and I knew that something radical had to happen.
In desperation, I went off for a couple of weeks to trawl through Portugal, a country populated by over 10 million people, most of whom live along the coast. Travel took me from Porto in the north to Lisbon. As I ventured further inland, I experienced problems with my iPad and phone, hence the delay in writing a blog until I returned home.
I once read a message on an aircraft from the CEO of LAN part of which read as follows:
I invite you to take this flight as an opportunity to journey inside yourself, to get in touch with your feelings and live in the moment . . ."
I very much identify with these words as an approach to life and when I travel I usually write in a journal-style, about new perceptions, and what the travel reflects back to me about my personal growth. Also, stretching my mind to embrace a new language, and connecting with the locals, is not only stimulating and refreshing but pleasurable as well.
Did I write several next chapters for my book while I was away? No. Did I get any fresh ideas to develop the mystery part of my book. Yes.
More significantly, what did change were the feelings towards my themes and story when I returned, and that was enough to trigger me back into writing the book from a fresh perspective, with new twists to the story and greater depth in character development.
In other words, I wrote from the heart rather than the mind and found inspiration in memories of stays in different parts of the country. I was able to free up my thinking and not worry too much about expression after all this was only my first draft. My time abroad was fuel for clarifying my writing journey as well.
I have five photos to share with you. The three photos at the top of the page are: the Belem Tower, the Porto former Stock Exchange and gardens below the magnificent Cathedral in Braga. At the bottom of the page is a part of an incredible organ located in a 16th century church and typical white and blue tiles outside a building.
To buy 'True to Herself' click:
To buy 'Moving from Grief in Cornwall' click:
To buy 'South America: Under the Skin of a Foreign Country' click:
To watch the VIDEO of "South America Under the Skin of a Foreign Country" click: