Lately I've been suffering a bit from the one thing all writers know and fear; the dreaded writer's block. In my case it's not that I can't get words down onto paper (or onto the screen), it's just that they're jumbled and make no sense. A combination of sleepless nights and stress left me struggling for the right words for the first time in a while and I decided last week that a day or two away from the computer would do the trick; recharge my batteries.
I made plans to see a show at the theatre with a friend I haven't caught up with in far too long, and spent an hour choosing and downloading new books for my Kindle. Sometimes I worry I spend more time browsing for and downloading books than actually reading them, but that's a whole other blog post.
The show we went to see was Bloodshot at the St James Theatre - my friend's company were sponsoring the production. I have to say it was spectacular. I started the night skeptical as to how one man could pull off a convincing cast of characters on his own, but actor Simon Slater did an awe-inspiring job. We watched as an English photographer, Russian magician, Irish comedian and American jazz musician paraded before our very eyes, each character as convincing and complex as if a totally new actor had wandered onto the stage. This was juxtaposed perfectly against a backdrop of black and white photographs which drew us even further into this 1950's crime thriller. I'd initially been unsure about the tiny interior of the St James Studio, but the intimate cabaret style setting worked perfectly for this performance.
The evening left me feeling energised and more creative than I have been in a while, and I started thinking - do creative pursuits help to inspire creativity when it comes to copywriting, or any kind of writing, for that matter?
I know myself that an hour spent reading rather than slumped in front of the telly will lead to a more productive hour of writing later that night - perhaps my brain is already engaged in creating and imagining the scenes set out before me in a novel, so I'm already 50% of the way towards getting my own words down on paper (or laptop).
Other creative pursuits such as visiting a gallery or museum could also help when it comes to writers block then, I figured. I'll be using this as an excuse to test the theory this week (the hardship!) when I visit the Harry Callahan exhibition at the Tate Modern. Who knows, I may even check out one of the lunchtime performances of An Ideal Husband at the St James Theatre next week, work dependent.
I'm liking this new theory......