Your life is better than any choose your own adventure book: you are not limited by what is on the pages and can choose anything you want. What is on Page 1 for you today?
Welcome to the first Weekend Writer’s Castle!
This post will be the start of what I will call my Weekend Writing Castle series: basically I will start a topic of discussion and anyone can feel free to join in. It will focus on writing but may also be about other things or life in general. (After all, what do we write about?) I want this to be a conversation, so please feel free to tell me things you would like to discuss! Check out the Writer’s Castle page- (tab at the top) for more information and for my other writerly posts. I will try to post on Saturday or Sunday every week, so be sure to check back and sign up for updates to stay posted! (Email updates are on the right hand side of the page at the top.)
I am in a new country, teaching English in South Korea as you may or may not know and everyday I remind myself that it is a new day. Every weekend I can explore a new country. Sure, sometimes I want to stay home and cuddle up with a good or rather, a good e-book, lately since I can’t just order books to be shipped to me anymore or go to the local bookstore- (cannot read hangul yet).
But I want to make the most of time here, so I grab that book and get out there! I can always read on the way to wherever I am going! It is pretty exciting to be able to explore, go to new places, meet new people (even though I cannot really speak with them, but I manage, most of the time- and it reminds me I need to really learn the language! More about the language barrier in another post!)
You can do the same- go somewhere new. It doesn’t have to be far away. It can even be down the street from you. Just make it somewhere new- that new shop, the one you always pass by but never go in? Or make it new by talking to someone you have seen there but never really spoke to, more than in passing anyway.
You make the rules. You can take the bus, subway, train, car, time machine or whatever mode of transportation it is that you have and go somewhere new. Get off at a stop you have never been to before. Go to a new place. Make it a new start, a new day, a new phase of your life. It doesn’t matter that it isn’t January 1st. You can start now. Every day really can be made anew for you.
Recently, I decided to go do some exploring (which I definitely will be doing more of while I am here!) and went to a Jewel museum. I got off the bus along with a few other people and met two guys my age who were also going to the museum, so we walked in together and were talking, as much as we could anyway, as they did not know much English and sadly I do not know more than five words in Korean.
But I learned they were from Seoul and were doing some traveling. When we left the museum, we all waited for the next bus together at the bus stop (and kept waiting…and waiting…) and I told them about my plans to go to Seoul hopefully soon and visit the museums there, particularly the Korean War museum for an idea for a novel I have- (more about that to be announced as well!)
We finally got on the bus back to the main part of the city and they made sure I knew how to get back to the right bus for my town (Korean people are very friendly and helpful and will always go out of their way for you-they are great friends to have!) We made plans to get together in Seoul and go to the museum.
I will go somewhere new, talk to someone new, and I won’t plan more than necessary and will write about my adventure in a future post. If I plan too much, sometimes it discourages me from getting out there. Or just gives me a nice excuse to stay in 😉
But you can do the same and make everything new for you! It doesn’t have to be a whole remodeling of your life, but you can change certain things. This can awaken your outlook on life. And for the writers reading this (this is Writer’s Castle, but anyone is welcome!) it will also breathe new life into your writing.
I don’t profess to have all the answers, but I think that everyone can do small things to improve their life and it has to start somewhere. And the best thing is you can always start again every day.
I would like to start a support system, so to speak. For writers. For readers. For dealing with life. Everyone gets discouraged at times, everyone could use a friend or someone to support them and listen to them. If you don’t think you need this, look around. Someone does. Try to be that person for them.
Okay, back to our experiment: First, decide what you want to change. It can be any area of your life: this is your experiement. Why do you want to change this? You need to have a clear purpose, a goal in mind about what you want to do and why. It has to matter to you, so make sure you know your motivation.
Change things around you. You can make choices that affect how your day goes, how your week goes and in turn how your life goes. Smaller choices lead to bigger choices. What you think is trivial or unimportant can in fact have a bigger impact than you expected. Smiling at someone as you walk by can start a new friendship. Yes, we know this, but how many times do we ignore the advice (myself included) because we are too busy, too tired, not in the mood? Deciding to talk to someone can reveal something in common with them and you can both end up being a huge source of help and support to each other (or even a small source of support). It is the small things, how we live our life everyday that can have the surprisingly biggest impact.
Another way to change things is to go a different route than you normally do. Walk the long way or go down a different block- change your perspective. Wake up earlier and get some more sunlight before you start the day. Take a few minutes to think about what you want your day to be like and then do what you can to make it that way.
Set goals for yourself, go ahead, and make a short list right now. Jot down a few things. Not motivated enough? How about at least one thing?! What do you want? And then focus on accomplishing that. What are some ways for you to do that? Make sure you set a time to do them, so they actually get done and keep the task connected in your mind to your goal, so you remember its importance.
Once you have started this new way of doing things, write about it or work on some of your writing (or to go with the theme- write something new!) free-write if you like, about whatever comes to mind.
See if it inspires you. When you go back to your current writing project (or new one) – see if it inspires a character, a scene, a place, an idea, a conversation. Even if you don’t think it has inspired something concretely or anything right away, it’s still good to switch it up. This allows you to be more flexible and this will help in your writing. Everyone can always can use a breath of fresh air and the same goes for your words.
Start your own experiment with me- change it up everyday and write about the experience and how you think it affected your writing.
Set your goals. Join the experiment. Write! Remember, the world is your own adventure book! Start with a new page today.
Report back. Looking forward to hearing about it! Post in the comments below about what you plan to experiment with and change and how you will do this. Then come back and tell us about your experiment! Please follow or sign up for email updates at the top right, thank you!