In October, I spent a week in Avon on Hatteras Island in the Outer Banks with a group of six writers. Another friend joined us to make coffee in the morning and cook dinners at night. Does it sound wonderful?
It was fantastic but not for the reason you may think.
Yes, the scenery was beautiful every day no matter what the weather, but for me, the week offered quiet.
Our house is an empty nest now (except for one chick who’s transitioning from one career to another and will move out in January), so the actual house is usually quiet. What’s not quiet is my mind when I’m there because of the responsibilities from many directions that demand my attention every day.
So this working week was a balm, a week to stop and listen to God and to my own brain. For me, it was time to get back to writing, to focus on one task for longer than twenty minutes before dealing with somebody else’s to-do list.
Writing takes time and quiet and thinking and putting words down, then deleting them, then putting more down. Sometimes it looks like nothing is happening. It looks like we may be daydreaming or procrastinating or avoiding real work. That’s why time like that week is so important to writers.
When I look at the work I accomplished on Hatteras and remember the word counts my author friends met, I’m mentally high-fiving all of us.
It just looks like I’m staring at my computer, grinning.
Hope Toler Dougherty holds a Master’s degree in English and taught at East Carolina University and York Technical College. Her publications include three novels as well as nonfiction articles. A member of ACFW, RWA, and SinC, she and her husband live in North Carolina and enjoy visits with their two daughters and twin sons.
Find her books on Amazon. Rescued Hearts
Mars…With Venus Rising
Visit Hope at www.hopetolerdougherty.com for more blog posts on writing, her family, and random thoughts, and for all her social media links.