All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy; and it doesn't do much for Jill, either. I understand the dedication it takes to finish writing a book, but sometimes you just have to get away from the computer and breathe different air.
I am not one of those people that are able to sit and write and write and write until their fingers bleed. I tend to burn out at the three hour mark. My brain starts to fuzz and I can literally watch my writing disintegrate. I stop when the thought of hurling the computer across the room is sounding sane. And then...I bake.
I find baking calming, and I like that the results are often cookies. I mutter about my plot as I measure out the flour and the sugar. I try out pieces of dialogue as I'm dumping chocolate chips into the bowl. (I don't measure the chips, I dump until it 'looks right'.) Ah, you will be saying, you're not at the computer, but you're still writing. I admit this is true, which is why after the cookies comes...the walking.
I live very near a river that has shown a tendency to flood every few years. As a result, there are raised banks all along it and paths built on top of the the raised banks. It's a wonderful place to walk; there is river traffic to watch and trains (lots of trains) making their way across the train bridge. On the other side of the banks are farms. There's a riding school. There can be cows. It's quiet (when the trains aren't squealing across the bridge.) Traffic noise becomes nothing more than a low rumble. The best thing is that I do not allow myself to think about what I'm writing. I pay attention to how much (or how little) snow is on the mountains in the distance. I listen to birds and to the crunching of my footsteps. I let my mind breathe.
What do you do when it's time to step away from the computer? How do you let your mind breathe?
The picture at the top of this post is a picture of my town.