Burning bright

Recently, Jersey Farm Scribe guest-posted on Writing and Illustrating about how she keeps the flame alive. Not a wood fire – though that would be lovely on this chilly Thursday – but her fires of creativity and passion for writing.

I love that Erika has built a successful freelance career as she pursues her passion for children’s books, and her article got me thinking. Erika explains how writing all the time means it turns into a job or a chore, and she has found a way to keep her love of writing burning – and her creativity fueled, as well.

Her habit is to set aside two hours each week to free write – longhand and away from her computer, completely unrelated to any current projects, fiction or nonfiction – so she can remember how much she loves to write.

When I first read this, all I could think is “Two hours?! I need that time for my book or my blog, or my reviews. It’s hard enough making sure my library hours and the unending business of life doesn’t push aside my writing time.”

But she’s got a point. Even what we love most can become a chore if we let it. I certainly don’t spend all my reading time reading books I should read or need to read. There are plenty of evenings where I’m reading just for fun, and the writer inside quiets down and lets the reader take over.

I don’t know that two hours is reasonable for me, not when I’m getting two hours day in at my desk. But I think I just might give her habit a try. Fooling around with word play and the horrible “pomes” I used to scribble when working on my picture book might just give me a boost with my “real” projects.

What do you do to keep that fire to write burning?


P.S. I’m ginning up the courage to jump into twittering. I’m also considering a reboot of this blog for the coming year. Any thoughts or opinions on the following?

  • Blog title: “L is for Librarian, W is for Writer. Z is for Zampetti!”
  • Twitter handle – better to stick with your name or something fun? (@LWZampetti or @WisForWriter or @LibrarianLeslie…. )
  • Is Tumblr a better blog platform?

10 thoughts on “Burning bright

  1. I like your wordpress over tumbler.
    Yes get on twitter.
    Use at least Leslie or Zampetti in your handle so we can find you. When you start typing a handle it will pull up suggestions, but if I type librarian it may bring up a whole bunch of those.
    Blog title. Writing Librarian? Hmm. I’m not sure. Librarian Leslie Writes?

  2. I like your idea for a blog title, but it seems a bit long. You have a great last name though so if you can find a way to use it, you should. Though I have not used it personally, Tumblr is great to connect to or supplement your blog. It’s good for quick posts and sharing video, photos, links, etc.

  3. I love Erika’s blog posts, too, Leslie πŸ™‚ And I think we need to do what suits us. I haven’t had TIME to write enough to actually have a problem with inspiration, but I do believe that when we step away or whatever, it fuels our creative flow πŸ™‚

    I love the blog title, but maybe to shorten it up, a few possibilities?:

    L = Librarian, W = Writer. Z = Zampetti

    Zampetti = Writer/Librarian (or Writer Librarian)

    Z is for Zampetti
    Writer and Librarian

    Leslie Zampetti
    Librarian and Writer

    Twitter, in my opinion, is fantastic. I was overwhelmed at first, but once you realize you can’t/shouldn’t try to follow the continuous streams of tweets, you’ll enjoy it. You also need to frequent #kidlitchat on Tues. at 9pm EST, and #sharpschu book club πŸ™‚ You want to connect with everyone you know and follow people of interest, more so to be connected than to read ALL their tweets (it’s impossible). The more active you are, the more followers you will gain, but you want to connect to people who have similar interests. Not just anybody.

    I actually like all the handles and as long as your real name is in your profile, when people search for your name, they will find your handle.

    I keep thinking about your Twitter handle and the whole thing, and the more I keep thinking about it, though I was switching up the words like ZampettiLibrarian, etc., I’m now more sold on and clinging to this:

    I think if you shorten your blog to something like “Z is for Zampetti” and keep the Librarian/Writer stuff as your tagline, you can do the same thing for Twitter, they will match and both be catchy, so maybe your Twitter handle can be ZisForZampetti. It is your tagline that lets people know who you are or what you do or what you think will catch someone’s eye and want to follow you. That’s actually how I choose to follow someone—by what’s in their tagline or how they interact on Twitter and in chats. (The right chats are THE best thing on Twitter, imo.) You don’t have to have your name in the handle itself, though. I didn’t do that ’cause I thought up my blog title first, then did the handle to match. My name “Donna Marie” is the name in my profile and it shows with every tweet, along with my handle. So if you have Leslie Zampetti as your name, that’s what will come up if people search for you that way, along with your handle.

  4. Hey Leslie! I’m SO honored that you mentioned my post! πŸ™‚ I’m glad you made the idea your own with your own twist. Keep those silly word play “pomes” coming! Priceless.

    I LOVE Twitter. It’s a great source of opportunities and a simple way to make connections. Look me up if you join! I agree with everyone else that having your own name in there is helpful. I like Donna’s idea with ZisforZampetti.

    Lol, ironically, my name is not in mine. I’m @NJFarmScribe. But honestly, I sort of wish it was now.

    1. Erika, all you have to do is put your name on your profile instead of “Farm Scribe-Erika” take out “Farm Scribe” and just put your name so when people search, they’ll find you by your author name πŸ™‚

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