‘Tis the season to decorate our homes, shop for gifts, and attend oodles of school programs and events, office parties, and church and community functions. Between all of those activities, will you have time to write?
Everyone loves a happy ending, of course. And what kind of stories have the best happy endings? Stories in which the holiday season is the backdrop, of course! It would be interesting to know how many of our favorite stories in which the holiday season plays a lead role were actually written, in whole or in part, during the arguably busiest month of the year.
Of course, every time of year is a busy time for those of us who manage full-time careers, homes, children, community activities, etc. Viewed from that perspective, is this month really any different?
For those who participated in NaNoWriMo, the arrival of December may signal pure relief from the pressure of constructing a 50,000 novel in the course of a mere thirty days. However, I hope that those of you who were able to join in the November challenge are able to maintain your momentum and keep working on your novels this month.
Not having participated in NaNoWriMo, I am looking forward to tapping into the sights, sounds, and emotions of the season to help me write this month. I challenge all of you, especially those of you who maintain blogs, to step outside your comfort zone this month and try something different. If you have never written poetry, for instance, perhaps you will be inspired to give it a try. If you have never felt comfortable writing fiction, this month might be a good time to take a stab at it by focusing upon a holiday theme. Perhaps you could use a holiday memory as a starting point and, from there, weave an intriguing tale. If you have never previously written about your own family traditions, a particularly happy year, an unexpected holiday guest or a similar topic, this might be the year to do so!
This may be the most wonderful time of year to write and, more importantly, write from a new perspective or with new purpose, despite our time limitations, because of the many additional sources of inspiration. Of course, inspiration can be found in the mundane and ordinary or the extraordinary, as O. Henry, author of one of my favorite holiday stories, “The Gift of the Magi,” observed. He is credited with noting that “there are stories in everything. I’ve got some of my best yarns from park benches, lampposts, and newspaper stands.”
Be sure to leave a comment and let me know what writing projects you are working on during this wonderful time of the year!