Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Feed Yourself

Cricket McRae

I had coffee with some local Sisters in Crime the other morning, and Knitting Mystery maven Maggie Sefton was telling us about her upcoming trip to Florence. She said she’d been running ragged lately, and needed to refill her well.

My thought was only a quietly resounding aaaaaaaaah. Sounds lovely. Juggling my new writing, the already contracted writing, the marketing, and real life – well, it’s good, it’s hard, and it’s a lot like everyone else’s life, where you have to balance fourteen things at any given time, and you love them all.

Sometimes I forget to recharge, and I was grateful to Maggie for the reminder. We pour ourselves into our work. We give pieces of our psyche, our experience, our love to our creative children. We can’t do it forever. We simply must recharge in order to continue to do make art. Julia Cameron talks about this in The Artist’s Way.

There is something decadent about feeding our souls. And we all do it in different ways. So yesterday I went to the flea market, where, for a mere twenty-four dollars I picked up six cookbooks published before 1975, which I will pour over at my leisure, a pair of Ray Ban knockoffs, a pair of Thinsulate gloves, a tiny pair of silver-framed reading glasses, and a stained glass light bulb for the lamp in the corner of my bedroom.

Then I came home and made a caprese salad with tomato and basil from my backyard and homemade mozzarella, topped with truffled olive oil and balsamic vinegar. I ate it slowly, mindfully – and it nourished not only my body but my mind.

Not a trip to Florence, but good enough for now.

How do you recharge?


G.M. Malliet said...

Too right. When you start to feel you're on a treadmill, it's time to step off. Lovely post.

Sue Ann Jaffarian said...

It depends on the time I have to recharge. If it's only a few hours, I like to go to a favorite small bistro with a funny book or a good friend. When I have a couple of days, I like to go overnight to someplace quiet and quaint. No computer, cell phone, no cats (forgive me B and Raffi) - just me, books and sleeping in late undisturbed with no timetable.

Keith Raffel said...

Stephen King says a writer should write 4 hours a day and read 4 hours a day. The latter refuels me.

Sue Ann Jaffarian said...

Keith, when I make the money from writing Mr. King does and, therefore, won't have to work a day job, perhaps I can have the luxury of reading 4 hours a day. Right now, it's a luxury to get in 30-60 minutes of leisure reading on top of the job and writing 2-4 hours a day.

But when I really think about it, I do get in 4 hours of reading a day - legal memorandums, legal research, and asset purchase agreements and their attending disclosure schedules. Do those count?

I aspire to reading for enjoyment 4 hrs a day. It would be heaven.

Felicia Donovan said...

What a lovely posting, Cricket and that salad sounds wonderful. Recharge? I thought we were supposed to keep going and going and going...

Seriously, I recharge when I'm with people I love and care about (and my dogs). Enjoying their company, sharing stories and laughter, is the best way I know how to recharge. And once in a while getting some sleep....

Terri Thayer said...

I had a fun recharging afternoon spent at the movies with some girlfriends. And Pierce Brosnan and Colin Firth. Mama Mia is completely over the top, which makes it complete fun!

Of course I have an ear worm or two I could do without...Do you now?