Rain, love and depression …


Well it’s been a week of rain and thunderstorms for most of the UK – widespread floods again and more rain to come. There’s something about the rain though – you all know how much I love writing in the rain, but there’s more to it than that. There’s something primal about the force of nature that always leaves me in awe. I love the loud claps of thunder cracking the sky in two overhead (even though Koda dog hates it), and I can’t help but smile when the lightening lights up the horizon. I’ll probably be shot down for this, but I like rain the best out of all weather conditions. Sunshine makes me uncomfortably warm and sticky, and this month has made me long for winter. I like the stiff breeze in autumn, and the chill of the frost in winter, and I like the way spring wakes up the world again, but rain and storms just make me want to sit and write. And since writing is something I adore then this is a good fit.

Novel wise, we are at a little over 50k words now, so well and truly past the half way point. I’m loving weaving in the secondary characters and sub plots. It just feels like it’s flowing really well, though the plot idea for novel three keeps trying to weave it’s way in so there may end up being a little more character overlap. It’s a very strange sensation writing a story that you hope one day others will read and enjoy as much as you enjoy writing it, but at the same time as writing it have ideas pop in for another story. Sometimes it means taking a step back and making sure the story is going where you want it to go, and that you’re not losing yourself in the overlaps, the characters and plots and making sure that the actual story is getting told. I do this by getting up, making a coffee, and usually doing some kind of chart to ensure I’m not letting it get away from me.

I would just like to put it out there in the internetverse (again!) that I have the best family and friends ever. Everyone’s so supportive of my writing, so patient when I’m irritable cos something won’t work, or when I want to hole up in the house, shutting myself off from the world. My hubby especially has been really good this last week. My depression has been a bit prominent this last week, making me snappy, judgemental, and generally like a bear with a sore head. I’ve not slept well due to the heat and have had a few bits on my mind, but he takes it all in his stride and lets me vent, then holds me when I’ve had enough of being mad for no reason. I think it takes a special kind of person to be the partner of a writer anyway, it can’t be easy having the proverbial door shut in your face while your other half loses themselves in a world you’re not a part of, but when the writer has depression too, well frankly, I think he must be nuttier than me!! It struck me that we don’t say the words that matter enough, and often we don’t show how we feel enough either. I made a point of telling him that without him I wouldn’t be the person I am now, and am intending to take him out for a nice meal next week, just us. Date night so to speak.

Writing’s a very therapeutic exercise, especially when my mood is low for whatever reason – focussing on the words and losing myself in that world allows my mind to focus on something other than whatever is bothering me. And when I’m done, I always get the satisfaction of knowing that I’ve added to the story and been doing something I love. I’ve always been a creative person: used to do ceramics weekly at a little place in Northallerton where I would clean off wet clay items, have them fired, and use a variety of painting techniques to complete them. I used to have loads of stuff lying around but now I only keep one piece – a native american indian with an eagle behind his head. His eyes just scream of desperation and sadness and I love it so much. I designed my own tattoos so they’re all unique and have done several designs for others too. I even went through a long phase of card making, which I’d love to get back into, if I could ever find the time again! Poetry has always been something I turn to in times of low mood, though according to the ‘professionals’ it’s not structurally correct, but I always found poetry a release for emotion, it was never meant to be about how many beats I use, or whether I had too many syllables per line. I still write poems now, though they’re not really something that I show off. Writing, or anything else that provides a release for your mind, a place you can go where no-one else can visit, can be instrumental in helping with things like depression. It’s something that helps release a bit of what is pent up inside. Many therapists use creative techniques such as writing or drawing to help patients with such disorders. If someone asked me what causes my depression, I honestly couldn’t give a good answer. I truthfully don’t know – there are factors I am aware of that subconsciously contribute, but generally I try to be upbeat and positive, even when I’m low. I don’t know the cause, but I know what helps – yes the drugs do, but so does the fact that I try not to let myself wallow and that I try and use such things as writing to help me. Why not give it a go? Next time you’re having a down day, take a moment and write down the emotions you feel in a list, then list the emotions you want to feel, then use those lists and write a sentence for each emotion where that particular emotion becomes the reason for the sentence i.e. ‘The storm clouds raced across the sky, flitting from one place to the next like the thoughts running round her head.’ The description here, a rather obvious one of thoughts racing, could be used to portray anxiety. When you’ve got the sentence, why not use it as part of a short paragraph. Before you know it, you’re on the way to writing something larger, and you may well find at the end of it that you’re mood has lifted slightly.

I’m about to make a cuppa now and make a start on my own therapeutic exercise for today – more novel writing. I hope you all have a fantastic week – mine’s pretty full this week! Picnic tomorrow with the lovely Victoria J Brown and her 2 girls (might be a car picnic the way the weathers looking but we shall see), an interview for a forensic job this week, a set of night-shifts, car repairs/service and a dentist appointment. But never fear, around all of this, I shall endeavor to write, read and have the occasional hour of downtime 🙂 Take care, and as always, thanks for reading 🙂

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