September 2014: Silence, Inspiration, Solution

My book is in its final edits. Yet, I still struggled with an issue one of beta readers pointed out to me months ago. She had a very valid issue. It haunted me during editing and rewrites like a pebble caught under the sole liner in your shoe.

It was a "maybe it is just me who finds this a bit confusing, but..." comment. Was this confusing for my other readers? Did my method of naming my characters make it difficult for the reader to follow the characters and the story line? Should I let this issue go or continue on with the final edits? Any new revisions may take be back a month, maybe two.

This character problem was solved shortly after a hot shower. I just finished putting on body lotion and flopped across the bed. I took a deep breath and closed my eyes. I only needed a few seconds rest before going out to dinner.  Bong! Bong! The clock's chimes woke me. In a short five minute nap, the solution to this nagging problem came to me. My editing timeline has been adjusted. The beta reader's issue can be solved without rewriting the entire novel.

The solution came in one of my moments of silence. Yes, sometimes I have the luxury of short periods of silence.  Many times they occur right before the alarm summons me to start my day.  You know when the daylight creeps in the bedroom and you cover you head and go back to sleep until you have to get up.

An answer may come to me as I finish a deep breathing exercise. While laying still feeling my mind connecting back to my world. Bingo! a problem passes by and meets its answer.

My Point: Stop, when your world seems out of control. Yes, many of you live very busy lives.
  1. Sneak away. Lock the bathroom door.  Take deep breaths.
  2. Grab a cup of java, tea, or hot water. Set your stove timer for five minutes. Tell your loved ones they may sit quietly for five minutes. You will come back when the timer goes off. Step outside and breathe deeply.
You don't think you can do it. My mother did. She would get dressed up every Mondays. She would have our supper ready. When my dad walked in the door,  she would kissed him goodbye. Dad was left to feed, bath, and put us to bed. (This was the 1950s.) She'd hop on the bus. Go downtown to shop and have a hot dog at Woolworth.  After a few hours, she'd come home a new woman. This is how a woman with six children under the age of eight kept her sanity for many years.

Always have a mental health escape plan from your reality to help you untangle your "knotty, unsurmountable problems." You may not always solve them, but you can hack away at the weeds or push away the clouds in your mind. With a little silence, sometimes inspiration or a solution appears.

Please share your mental health escape with us. Use the comment space below.


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