Last night during a nocturnal wander through the house, during wakefulness fueled by housetraining that adorably cute Italian Greyhound viewed in Part I, I noticed starlight bouncing off the black plastic laid for next year’s garden area. You see, this is one of the most passive and easy returns on preparing soil for new plantings.
The equivalent of plastic mulch in my life at that time took me from writing about forced draft blowers, main feed pumps, lithium bromide plants and the ever cool condensers into first women’s fiction, then onto my latest rage of contemporary and high fantasy. Okay, admittedly, FDBs and MFPs can be wickedly geekish and even satisfying to write about, but world building’s way more fun.
Allow me to tout two books, which at that time helped me both mentally and emotionally into transition. Clarissa Pinkola Estes’ WOMEN WHO RUN WITH THE WOLVES and Julia Cameron’s ARTIST’S WAY provided both cure and inspiration for what ailed me. Let’s face it, Navalese-speak does not make for a bestselling author, although it does help with keeping to just-the-facts Jack.
Since then, I’ve turned to other geographically remote mentors such as Stephen King’s ON WRITING, Carol Lloyd’s CREATING A LIFE WORTH LIVING, Susan Shaughnessy’s WALKING ON ALLIGATORS and FRUITFLESH by Gayle Brandeis. I’ve even returned to Julia Cameron, although her later works failed to spark the same cascade of light as ARTIST’S WAY, through no fault of hers. We artists are receptive at different times to different magnitudes of inspiration, after all.
So if you find that atrophy has set in and hope to recover not only your mojo, but go to a greater level of creativity and productivity, think in terms of mulching your creative beds for your next planting season.