It is the next to last day of January, and so very cold outside. We didn't get the snow and ice that has paralyzed the south, but we're in a deep freeze and, now that the sun's gone down, it's going to get even colder overnight.
So why am I thinking about playgrounds? You know, like swings and slides and climbing gyms? Walks around the lake, children's water parks? Could it be I'm wishing for warmer days?
I'm remembering my granddaughter's delight at summer's end when we took her to the water park and she, at sixteen months old, ran through the sprays. Wet and wiggly, she ran from her daddy into the fountain and out, right into my arms, just about knocking me over. Back and forth, back and forth. She couldn't get enough of the absolute glee of it all. She had discovered something new and loved it. And we loved experiencing it with her.
I think that's one of the things about writing that I enjoy most--discovery. Whether it's discovering who my character is (and I haven't quite gotten there yet) or journaling two or three pages only to come to an "aha" moment of something I didn't realize I was thinking, different from the original direction I thought I was headed in, there's fun in the process.
And so I tell myself, play with words. Play with ideas. Play with character sketches, motives, conflict, themes. Don't make the process hard. Go to the playground of writing. Swing a bit. Dash through the fountain and feel the spray. Choose discovery.
No mattter what the temperature outside is!