Wednesday, February 10, 2016

February Theme: Winter Survival For Writers

By Marcia Thornton Jones

In order to survive the gray days of winter when conditions are harsh and food scarce, animals migrate, adapt, hibernate or seek shelter. As a writer, I, too, often face seasons of scarcity--when ideas melt faster than snowflakes and words freeze before reaching the page. When that happens, I thought I might learn a lesson from nature and migrate, adapt, hibernate, and seek shelter.

·         Migrate—treat myself to artist dates, take field trips, write in different locations, shop for writing supplies, plan a vacation, go on a retreat
·         Adapt—modify my process, adopt a playful journaling attitude toward writing, adjust goals, write with different tools, release attachment to expectations and outcomes
·         Hibernate—relax, rest, meditate, take a break and use the downtime to read books, study craft, and watch movies for plotting and character development
·         Seek shelter—cultivate a support system, join writing and reading groups, take classes, sign up for a seminar, go to a conference

It’s worth noting that some animals sleep so deeply during hibernation that their heart rates fall to four beats per minute and they appear dead. But they are not dead. They eventually awaken to another season of abundance. They—and I—just have to migrate, adapt, hibernate, and seek shelter in order to survive these harsh gray days of scarcity.


  1. What wonderful reminders for us to re energize and take a new direction in our creative processes. Love this post Marcia.

    1. Thanks, Darlene. Maintaining energy is difficult for me. So glad this resonated with you.

  2. This is so great! As soon as I finish a project, I always take a week or so to attend to the business side of writing only. Lets me catch up AND recharge!

    1. Thanks, Holly. I find it difficult balancing energy between the business side and the writing side!

  3. Love the four strategies traced out with the wonderful animal parallels. And I like the reminder that even when my creative heartbeat slows a bit, I'm not dead...

    1. Sometimes it feels as though the writer-me has curled up and died. Researching hibernation gave me hope!

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