What is that, you wonder? I wondered the same thing upon my discovery. I’ve seen my share of potato “eyeballs,” but never one sprouting purple furry, white-polka dotted protrusions. Usually they’re rather boring, a dingy parsnip white, or a Jolly Rancher apple green – or if you’re lucky, they may feature a halo of magenta-pink. (And to be fair, they’re called “eyes,” but by my young northwestern Pennsylvania standards, they became eye-balls when I was a kid. And, well, I refuse to grow up).
I realize I may be revealing too much about myself by admitting that this thing was – is – sitting on my kitchen countertop. But give me a break. Living 45 miles from the closest produce means I just can’t get around to eating my veggies quickly enough or buying new ones before they start a second cycle of, um … rebirth.
Plus, can you blame me for keeping this wondrous specimen around? I find it fascinating and reminiscent of ant mandibles, or close-up spider parts. Or something like that. Aren’t zoomed-in insect parts always furry like this … and a bit creepy, but ultra-spellbinding?
What do you see when you look at these photos? A flower? Vibrant colors? Velvety fabric? Or just some crazy writer who spends way too much time analyzing her produce?
For Writers: My kitchen ‘revelation’ got me to thinking about resting (since my potato pal had plenty of rest time on my countertop) … about taking your time and letting things simmer. It also got me to thinking about my WIP (work in progress) and how long it took to germinate the ideas that are fast becoming a novel. Over a period of four months, I fused together various thoughts that had surfaced in bits and pieces over the course of a few years. Never once did there seem to be a common thread that tied any of those random thoughts and what ifs to one another. But in time, a path emerged, and many of those seemingly diverging thoughts did tie in. In my case, the simmer time offered great rewards (and new ideas for future novels continue to percolate in the back of my mind, simmering as I work on the current WIP).
As writers, I think we’re an impatient bunch. My husband will tell you that patience is not one of my strong suits, but as I continue to mature as a writer, I’ve come to learn the power of taking pause. When you rest, and let your WIP rest, ideas sprout up. Organically. It’s almost as if, when you’ve taken the pressure off of yourself, you’ve given the creative mind license to do just that … be creative.
I know many of us – freelancer writers, book-contracted novelists – are on deadline, making pause and reflection difficult. But even a few days away from a difficult scene, magazine article or short story can bring much-needed clarity. Sometimes a few hours will do the trick. Sometimes that distance, that rest, that natural growing period, results in things you might never have imagined …. And sometimes – as in my case – those things might just be sitting right on your kitchen countertop.
What are your experiences with stepping back and watching things grow at their own leisure? Not only with your writing, but in life as well?
P.S. Did you miss my amateur photo contest that ended March 15? Take a peek at ALL of the fantastic entries!