I realize that when we hear the word “recipe” we visualize a list of ingredients. Much the same happens when we hear the words “writing” or “book”. We visualize words on a page. We image an old Dickensian desk lit by a candle. Hunched into that candle light an old bastard scribbles something onto the top piece of a pile of papers.
But neither the list of ingredients nor the words on a page actually have their start on the page. Or the pen in hand. Or laptop. Just as eating begins in the garden, writing begins in the mind. So, my first Red Apron Recipe begins in the tool shed. The one where you keep the basic tools needed to work the mind garden from which your writing, or any creative endeavor, has the best chance to take root and grow your own unique story.
In order to prepare your mind to write or create, work must be done. If you want to eat, the same holds true.
I speak from experience. I had lots and lots of work to be done. I was starting with an arid rocky, weedy plot of land. I needed every tool in my shed. Below is a list of tools needed to begin work in your mind garden. I have attached possible uses for them. I call them my “Red Apron Recipes”
- Big shovel-yoga
- Smaller shovel-meditation
- Gloves- walks in the park, neighborhood
- Trowel- exercises such as cross training, running
- Compost pile- dreams
- Rake – journaling
- Buckets, flower pots etc- sauna, whirlpool
- Weed tool- intentional distractions such as drives in the country
It is your shed, your garden and will be your recipes and writing. In the coming days if you get into your shed and you use a tool or two, just notice how you feel afterwards. Pay attention to your thoughts during and afterwards. If you feel like it, write down whatever has come to mind. It takes time and practice. So try it again.
These tools worked for me over and over. They feel worn and good in my hands. And for me, at least, when it comes to the actually writing, that part that is supposed to so damn difficult, I practically tip toe through the tulips. Good luck!
“May I help who’s next?