Monday, August 20, 2018

How to Get Out of a Writing Rut

...and Tap Into Your Muse

It happens. We all get into a bit of a funk from time to time. It's easy to feel blah and have no drive. Life is hard...

What is this?!?! I'm supposed to be encouraging and inspiring you! Not opening the jar of darkness and letting negativity in.

But it's true. Most of us live busy lives. Jobs. Children. Family. Chores. Community. Church. You gotta walk the dog, check homework, wash the dirty dishes from the cake you just baked, mow the yard, do the laundry, take a meal to your neighbor who just got home from the hospital, pick up the living room, vacuum the house, get your oil changed, put air in the tires, de-wrinkle the clothes in the dryer - again, organize your bookshelves, pay the bills, do your nails, give your son a haircut, go school shopping, buy a new pitch fork for your compost pile, drive your husband to the dealership, email the lawyer, email 20 other people, go for a run, and remember to drink plenty of water.

You think there's any time left for writing?

I get it. Sometimes it feels like there's not enough time in the day. Sometimes there is and sometimes there isn't.

How to Get Out of a Writing Rut and Tap Into Your Muse || If you think you've hit a type of writer's block, just start writing. I'll tell you how. ||

Start Small

While this isn't exactly what I'd call Writer's Block, it's getting pretty close.

Commit to just 10 minutes. It's long enough to write a page. And if you write a page, you'll feel inspired to want to write another page the next day. And the next day and the next day. If you don't know what to write about, then just write nonsense.

Write about the mundane things of your day. Describe your living room. Explain to someone how to make your favorite meal. Write a fake letter you could never mail. Just 10 minutes. Start small and invite the Muse by actually writing. Anything at all...

Find Pleasure in the Little Things

This past Sunday, my family and I drove around the neighborhood looking for all the sunflower fields. I've lived here for 13 years and not once have I ever noticed a single field of sunflowers. And suddenly there's a dozen!!! Almost overnight fields of sunflowers popped up spontaneously. How did this happen? I allowed myself to be captured by the wonder and curiosity of a child.

We drove around trying to find as many fields as possible. Questions arose. How did this happen? Who planted them? Why? Does one single person own all this land in random lots? Is there some kind of secret gardening society I don't know about? It can't possibly be coincidence. Did a flock of birds make it happen? Did an airplane have a malfunction and drop a shipment of sunflower seeds over western North Carolina?

My pleasure in admiring this flower predestined for a sunny disposition led me to ride around the neighborhood looking for evidence of more? I smile (and wonder in amazement) when I think about it. And if anyone knows what happened... PLEASE let me know!!!

Push Through It and Do It Anyway

So you're tired. You just don't FEEL like writing today. I totally get it. But you know what? Once you get started, you'll liven up. You'll wake up. You'll feel the (pencil) lead running through your veins. The Muse will take hold and guide you to the next field of sunflowers if you let it.

But you have to be willing. You have to decide to write. Even if you don't want to. Start small. Find something to make you smile. And then start writing. The Muse will come. I promise. It did for me and it will for you.

Got a solution for my sunflower quandary? I'm all ears!

Keep on keepin' on...


Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Plot Synopsis of Shrek

Shrek, Donkey, and Princess Fiona on a Whirlwind Adventure

The very beginning of Shrek introduces the fairytale: a princess is locked in the highest tower of the tallest castle, far far away. She must stay there and wait for her prince charming to rescue her with a true love's first kiss. Shrek laughs. "Yeah right, like that's ever gonna happen." But yet it does. Read on...

Story Structure and Plot Arc for the Movie, Shrek || If you're a plotting geek and love to analyze movies, or you love for someone else to break down the plot for you, then you need to read this post. ||

The Signup

The point that begins the story is when Shrek inadvertently helps Donkey out by scaring off the soldiers who are chasing Donkey. Donkey then becomes a loyal friend and follows Shrek... everywhere! If Donkey didn't follow Shrek home, Shrek wouldn't have had anyone to take him to Duloc to find Lord Farquad.

The Gunshot

The second plot point of Shrek is when he and Donkey set off to find Lord Farquad in Duloc to get his land back and send all the fairy tale creatures back to where they came from. The adventure begins.

The Halfway Point

The Halfway Point aka midpoint, is when Shrek and Princess Fiona begin to like each other. It's a high point in the story.

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The Wall

And now we get the low point. When Princess Fiona accepts Lord Farquad's proposal to marry him, after which everyone is sad and lonely. Donkey is all alone. Shrek is sad. Fiona is lonely. Even the Dragon is sad. It seems as though there is no way to find happiness.

The Finish Line

But yet, happiness finds a way! Donkey and Dragon plot up a scheme -- so long as Donkey can convince Shrek to get on board with the plan -- to get the Princess back into Shrek's life, since they were "obviously" meant to be together. The Finish Line is when Shrek and Fiona marry each other and kiss to get their "happily ever after."

You might also like: Wonder Woman, My Girl 2, or Jurassic Park.


What's your favorite Shrek scene? Share in the comments!

Keep on keepin' on...



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