Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Rituals and Writing

For most folks, practicing a ritual means to reap a certain result. Sometimes it seems superstitious, like basketball player, Michael Jordan wearing his North Carolina shorts underneath his Chicago Bulls shorts for every game. Sometimes it seems mystical, like Author, Steven Pressfield invoking the spirit of creativity by reciting Homer’s Invocation of the Muse.  Other times it seems unusual, strange even funny.  Hemingway pounded away on a typewriter standing up, while Capote wrote lying down and in longhand.  Some writers, like John Cheever and Victor Hugo found writing in their underwear or in the nude beneficial. Hmmmm.

In an article in the Scientific American titled "Why Rituals Work," it said, “Despite the absence of a direct causal connection between the ritual and the desired outcome, performing rituals with the intention of producing a certain result appears to be sufficient for that result to come true.” Basically, you could do anything as part of ritual, as long as you repeated the action each time you did it.

For me, I’ll go as far as writing in my pajamas but not my underwear. I will play a piece of music over and over again both for when I’m painting and when I’m writing a scene. It drives my hubby crazy, but it puts me into a kind of trance like state. Doesn’t happen all the time, but when it does, I love the results. 

Do you have a ritual that gets you going?

Till next time,




1 comment:

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