When Things Aren't Going Well

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Page After Page by Heather Sellers

It's easy to be calm and strong when things are going well. When you are resting and exercising, your writing life is easy. It's when things are hard that we forget all our tools. I want you to rewrite a scene. Literally. I want you to take a conflict, one that you obsessed on, blew out of proportion, talked about a lot. Something at work, or in your family or friendships—not life or death—but an irritation you spent too much time on. (It should be easy to think of one because we all do this too many times each week, giving minor irritations—at the grocery store, in traffic, waiting in line longer than we deemed appropriate—way too much power over our imaginations).

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I want you to rewrite the scene, actually putting pen to paper. Write yourself, your character, with your head in the clouds, the art space, the spiritual center. In the writing, react as your best possible self. Write the scene. Take all the drama out.