A New Year discovery this morning—and yes, I know it’s not Monday Discovery day, and it’s already the tenth of January:
Kaspa & Fiona at Writing Our Way Home have launched their third Mindful Writing Challenge (previously known as the River of Stones) during January 2013. It seems a fine opportunity to quiet the mind at the beginning of each day, before the writing work or the housework or the errands or the other distractions of the day take over.
Kaspa and Fiona call these bits of writing small stones, which they define as “a very short piece of writing that precisely captures a fully-engaged moment.”
What a lovely idea, to stop and capture a moment, observe it for all it’s worth, and write about it. So I’ll try writing a small stone a day for the rest of January and post them here.
For January 10, there’s this:
Distant thunder. Rain sheens the deck, scattered with the last brown leaves.
Maybe this could be a haiku? That’s what “small stones” remind me of.
Distant thunder rolls.
Water sheens the deck, scattered
With the last brown leaves.
So here’s to mindfulness, always good for the writer’s eye.
How do you enter writing mode? A cup of good strong coffee? A few minutes of meditation? Tell me how you prepare your mind for the task at hand.
11 thoughts on ““Small Stones”: Meditative Writing to Start the New Year”
Coffee and then I jump in. Write by fire. Although I never seem to be totally in the mindset until I’ve been writing for about 15 minutes.
I must have breakfast. And then, if I’m not careful, I get caught up in the Internet. More discipline is called for here–thus the mindful writing exercise.
Thanks for sharing your small stone, Gerry. I love this idea! I love your beautiful example. Well done! I will give it a try.
I love this idea! It’s perfect for my daily freewrites, which I typically use to practice my “observation voice.”
Nice idea. I may try it. I really like yours and you are right it makes a great Haiku.
I have added a 15 minute meditation period each morning and I think this will fit in well with that. Perhaps, today, I’ll focus on the cranky 6 month old who woke up at 5:30 am and doesn’t seem to want to nap.
I should consider doing it early, or doing a little yoga first thing. If I don’t do it then (like exercise), I probably won’t. And things can always get in the way . . . like that precious, cranky baby! Enjoy.
Gerry: Your description of this program sounds better than the program itself, lol! Great job coming up with your first bit of fully-engaged writing in short spurts. Unfortunately, I don’t have the luxury of prep time for my writing. I voluntarily chose to enter my “writing mode” last year after a traumatic personal situation led me back to my first love, writing. Ever since then, my shift in mindset has catapulted me to dream up new, quirky, inventive, colorful ideas which I then turn into blog posts.
Honestly, I don’t usually prep, either. I just pick up where I was! But I like this idea of practicing mindfulness, which I don’t do often enough. I’m glad you were able to take tough circumstances and turn them into motivation. Brava, Amanda!
I can generally get myself kicked started into the writing process by reading over some of my work from the previous day. If that doesn’t do the trick then writing just about anything will help – ideas for a post, notes on something, an email to a friend – once I’m going, I can usually keep going.
I usually read over, too. I liked this idea of focus, though, on something small that takes your entire attention and blocks out everything else. We’ll see how it goes! Thanks much for the comment.