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Thursday, July 5, 2018

What I Do To Refill My Creative Pantry by Dora Bramden

As an author, being creative is an ingredient to what I do. But what happens when the inspiration runs out. I go get some. Just like refilling the pantry I go and get my fill of the world so I can come back and write about it.

Lots of writers that I’ve listened to speak about their routine include a daily walk. I groan at the idea but actually walking is very nice. I like to look around me and see what’s in other people’s gardens or look at nature in parks and observe the people who cross my path.
But a daily walk isn’t as  restoring as having a whole day away from the computer and the four walls of my study. Years ago, I began taking a day for myself once a week. I called it Dora Day because I needed time to think about what gave me pleasure. I didn’t do dishes, cook the dinner or worry about teenagers' or my partner's concerns. They had me every other day but not Dora Day. If an emergency wasn’t worthy of an Ambulance or the Fire brigade I didn’t need to know about it. Dad could handle it.

After starting Dora Day my productivity skyrocketed. I wrote massive word counts. Now that my children are adults, I can take the time to think or do what ever I want but I must remember to do it. If I don’t the inspiration dries up. That is the trigger for me to take an excursion and have an adhoc Dora Day.

But what do I do on these days? I go to places that make me feel inspired and immersed in beauty. For me that is a garden or a gallery. The National Gallery Victoria is my favorite art destination. I park in an all-day car park and walk to the gallery. After visiting the historic fashions and the romantic painters I walk across the bridge for an early lunch at the Hopetoun Tearooms (early to beat the crowd). The afternoon includes a saunter up and down the Royal Arcade which is filled with artisan boutiques. Window shopping in curio shops, or tasting the treats from chocolate specialists Koko Black are some favorite stops. Perhaps a browse in Myer or David Jones to see the latest fashions before heading back to the car.

Another favorite place near the Melbourne City Center is the Fitzroy Gardens. It has a story book atmosphere because of the attractions found there but it’s free entry and there are banks of flowering shrubs and annuals to enjoy. Captain Cook’s cottage sits in the grounds, I don’t worry about going through it every time but I do love to stroll around this heritage cottage. Lunch in the Pavilion Cafe, located in the middle of the gardens, is always delicious and from there it’s a short stroll to the fairy tree and the miniature village. The most magical part of the visit for me, is spending some time in the Conservatory. It’s a wonderland of flowering plants. A distinctly Victorian feel is evoked with the strategic placement of cast iron benches and a bridge over a goldfish pond.  Lacy maiden hair fern fronds soften the natural rock borders and the towering glass house arched windows provide a classic backdrop. In-between is filled with seasonal plantings, fountains and statues. A wonderland that I always find hard to leave.

I guess it’s no wonder I come home feeling so refreshed from these excursions that fill my creative pantry. I suppose we all have special places that call us back again and again. These are the places that replenish our creativity and it pays to heed their call. In fact I think I hear them calling me right now.

Dora Bramden writes contemporary romance
Healing Love, Passionate Romance

You can find out more about Dora and her books at her website.


Judith Ashley said...

Dora, If I ever make it to Melbourne, I know what sights to put on my tourist list! I can see why your Dora Days refill the well! And I love the alliteration. Judith Days doesn't have the same ring to it. Not particularly happy with Judith's Jaunts but at least that is alliterative and indicates I'm out and about.

Sarah Raplee said...

"I go and get my fill of the world so I can come back and write about it." I love this! And the idea of taking special days to refill our writer's well. And what lovely destinations you choose!

I'm on a quest to find some lovely destinations of my own. Thank you for the inspiration!

Diana McCollum said...

I love your blog post! Dora Days sound wonderful. I'd love to join you in Australia for a day. If only, . . . Sounds like a beautiful place.