It starts the moment we draw our first breath and continues even beyond our existence. Without it, civilization crumples and biology’s fail. We’re educated and trained in this multi-faceted art form throughout our lives and most never give it more than a passing thought. I’m speaking of maintenance of course!
Think about it…our homes, cars, bodies, relationships… everything in this world requires regular maintenance. Even when properly serviced most things deteriorate but when neglected …well sooner or later expect the catastrophic!
As a professional electrical maintenance technician, I thought myself well versed in the methodology BUT after consideration I realized I’d committed the cardinal sin for someone in my profession…I ASSUMED!
In my writing life, I mistakenly ASSUMED that as long as I continued to write I was maintaining, right? WRONG! Writing is the operation! It’s the function or the work of the process it’s NOT maintenance! So…how does one preform maintenance on a craft? There are no lube points…no fluids…no electrical nor mechanical checks…Hmmmm.
For starters, on a regular basis I suggest you challenge your skillsets…do writing prompts that take you far beyond your comfort zone. They needn’t be long exercises but they should take you down paths you normally wouldn’t tread.
Attending seminars and conferences is another maintenance must! Not only will it tune your writing engine but it will also enable you to build a rapport with like-minded folks and other professionals in the industry.
Too often as writers and human beings we ‘circle the wagons’ drawing ourselves into a tight knit, small cluster of people, limiting our exposure to the dreaded unfamiliar. If you truly wish to empower your writing, open yourself to new experiences, places and people! It’s like dumping high-octane booster into your fuel tank…you’ll get MORE POWER! OOOH---OOOH----OOOH!!!