So, it’s been a busy few days! As I mentioned before (here ICYMI), my brain has felt clogged recently and I have been struggling to get my words down on paper. I have had stories and sub plots and character developments whizzing round my head for weeks, yet, when it came down to actual #amwriting time, I couldn’t get past the cloud of fog in my head.
With that, I booked an impromptu writer’s getaway to the big city, to breathe in the sights, see the vibrations and taste the buzz in the air. With Oyster card in hand and notepad at the ready, I set off on a solo adventure, to collect some inspiration and get past that block. Although initially apprehensive (as I am not one for being outside my comfort zone), I couldn’t have wished for a better trip. I have come away from it with a much clearer idea of Genevieve’s story and, if I’m honest, I can’t wait to do it again!
There were a million things that I could write about, but I’ve decided to include my top 3 moments from my trip; the moments where I felt truly inspired.
1. Embankment at Sunset (#nofilter!)
While this wasn’t the first time I’ve fallen in love with the night lights of Embankment, this was a particularly notable moment of my trip. I watched the world change on Thursday night; I arrived at Embankment tube station at about 4.15, while there was still a dusting of sunlight in the air. Generally speaking now, my favourite place to see the sun set is over the sea, however I would have to say this was a close second.
I stood by Big Ben, as the bell chimed 4.30, and from this moment on, the change began. Gradually, the sun began to drop below the horizon and as the daylight began to die, the life of London began to surface and come alive. The bustling businessmen began to stretch their legs, after a long day behind a desk. The hard working mothers rushed home to greet their excitable children. The far flung commuters raced for their train. The fitness fanatics squeezed in a cycle, run, or power walk to their final destination. London’s rush hour is hailed as chaotic, unbearable and expensive. However, I think it’s rude to ignore the beauty of the switchover; the second that the capital comes alive.
2. St. Paul’s at Night
Once the sun had settled and people were well on their way to the comfort of their homes, or succumbed to the lure of the bar, I went for a walk along Embankment. St. Paul’s is one of the most beautiful sights in London, and stood by Blackfriars station, watching the light glitter in the Thames only makes it more beautiful. I love water; I’ve always been a water baby, and I don’t need to be in it to appreciate it. The movement of the sea, the ebb and flow of the river, the crash of a waterfall are all things I fall in love with. I will never get tired of looking at this sight. It’s a special one.
3. Appropriate locations – Tower of London
One of the things I have struggled with the most, is writing about the demise of one of the characters. I’ve been meaning to write this section for a while, but I just haven’t found the words to convey the emotion that is needed. On Friday, I headed eastwards and parked up just downriver from Tower Bridge, overlooking the Tower itself.
Synonymous with crime, punishment, and death, the Tower seemed like an excellent place to write about an execution. I couldn’t have been more accurate; sitting along the river, I wrote a scene that I have been plotting for so long, and I am ecstatic with the result. Call me an old romantic, but a rainbow appeared shortly after I finished; a symbol of my character leaving the world, leaving my imagination.
When trying to defeat that cloud that stops you writing, it’s important to people watch, to observe and to converse with new characters. While sitting at the river, I met Ali, from Kazakhstan, who has been in London for a month and was on the verge of returning home. (I told him he would most likely feature in my blog post!) It’s fascinating to learn about cultural differences (like the fact I don’t make eye contact, which is odd in Kazakhstan) and to see the world through another person’s eyes. Everyone you meet becomes a part of your story, and when you are, fundamentally, a storyteller, it is important to make your own as strong as possible.
To anyone suffering from writer’s block, I could not recommend a solo trip more. Over 41,000 steps later, I am over the moon with how I feel after my adventure. London is a great location, because there is so much to see and do, but anywhere that will get your creative juices flowing is worth a visit. Wherever your muse lives, seek it out, because you won’t regret it. I’ll certainly be doing it again!