I make my living with words: writing, researching and reading. When I’m not at the computer, I’m thinking about query ideas, the perfect hook, blog entries. Words buzz through my mind like a psychedelic ant farm. When I’m ‘off the clock,’ I do crossword puzzles and play games like Bookworm to keep my mind sharp. And, no, I don’t do those number games in the newspaper, because I am literally the monkey looking at a math problem. I do one Sudoku a year, referred to euphemistically as ‘my taxes.’
That’s why, when my brain is near overload, I head for something arty or crafty. Nothing in depth, mind you, because I am the person who has stitched numerous mutant skirts to my leg in the pursuit of sewing. But I do enjoy simple crafts, something I can do in a day. I like thinking in colors rather than syllables for a while. That’s why I like Creativity Portal; it’s a great site filled with projects from easy kid stuff (my specialty) to in-depth art ideas. There’s also a lot of writing prompts and wordplay as well, when the muse needs an imagination break, but I mainly go for cute things like the Valentine bug project. It’s adorable, useless, and completely stress-reducing. My bug looks less cute than the professional ones pictured; but, hey, he has character. He’ll be alone on Bug Prom Night, but he has character.
Hobby Lobby is my shrine of arty stuff offline; they have easy projects you can just pick up and do, and just wandering the aisles crams my head with tons of neat ideas for lost afternoons. Throw in a few packages of watercolor markers, some blank note cards, bookmarks, glue and little jewelry bits, and I’m a happy camper. I love creating blocky, abstract designs just for the fun of it, playing with different hues and shapes. None of it will ever see the light of day, although if you know me long enough, you’ll probably get a birthday card in the mail that looks like the proud work of a 10-year-old. Ah, yes, that’s a good day’s play.