Let me make this as easy as possible for you. When I was in college, I took a psychology class where my professor told us to chew gum while we were studying. And then…chew gum when taking the test. The two things became connected. I would smell peppermint Trident and all the information I studied for class ran out of my pen. I used this technique and did quite well in that class. I now use Lily Musk in my office. I drip it into my candles. I inhale it deeply to settle in each morning when I tuck into my desk. It smells sooooo good. I guess that would fall into the ritual of my day. I should have listed it in yesterday’s post. LOL
What can you connect with me? Your cuppa and nibbles! That will be my way of wiggling into your head. So, go fill that cuppa, get you some yummy nibbles and grab your copy of Around the Writer’s Block by Rosanne Bane. Hi, ROSANNE! No, I have no idea if she reads these posts, but it would be kinda cool if she did. Right?! Let’s tuck in and flip to page 138 and talk brains. How fitting- it is rather close to Halloween. Bwains!
Repetition reinforces connection. This is the reason dancers’ practice, and sports players run plays over and over again. The desire is for the movements to become second nature. The same can happen with words. Find things that you can do each time you sit down to write that will trigger the words to flow, like, inhale Lily Musk and drift into your story. According to Ms. Bane, German playwright Friedrich Schiller would keep a drawer of rotten apples in his desk. He claimed he couldn’t write without the odor. Um, gross, but if it works for you. You do you, honey, and I will do me. I prefer to eat the apples…with peanut butter.
Rosanne has invited all of us to partake in a brain experiment. No, you do not need a scalpel.
Okay, what we need to do is pick a smell, a good one and try to remember it without it sitting in front of you. For example, I would remember Lily Musk while sitting at the library. The goal is to create it perfectly in your memory, to the point you can actually smell it. Make sure it is something easily accessible to your mind, like cinnamon, peppermint gum, vanilla. Got it? Can you smell it?
Cool! Now write a list of words you associate with that scent. If I were to imagine the scent of peppermint gum my list would include words like psychology, tests, papers, cane (I was on a cane back then), black notebooks, funky sneakers (the guy who sat next to me), and Professor Banks.
Make it simple. No sentences, just words.
Where did these words come from? Why do those words come to mind when you smell your chosen scent? How can a scent evoke so many memories?
Tune in next time when we will answer these questions and more about how it will help with your writing.
Until next time boys, girls, and other amazing pronouns. I will see you next time with a fresh cuppa and a nose full of my favorite scent.