The Importance of Moodling

I learned the importance of giving myself “moodling time” during years of being employed as a writer, story editor, and writing instructor. The term comes from Brenda Ueland’s 1938 classic book, If You Want To Write: A Book about Art, Independence and Spirit.

Uland wrote, “So you see, imagination needs moodling—long, inefficient, happy idling, dawdling and putter,” which means I am a firm believer in the importance of daydreaming out windows, of sitting by the water or people watching in airports, and in particular going on long walks in nature.  I learned the hard way that to have a deep, welcoming, freely giving creative pool, I needed to take daily intentional time to refresh and replenish myself.

I believe many of us are masters at depleting our inner creative resources.  We drink too much coffee, work for long hours without breaks, and listen too often to that sometimes loud critic sitting on our shoulder.

Consider this “moodling” recommendation my gift to you.  The world needs storytellers, always has, always will.  If you have stories inside you that want to get out, then my recommendation is to give yourself daily moodling moments.  You won’t regret it, and it will show in your work.  Happy writing.

“I think I did pretty well, considering I started out
with nothing but a bunch of blank paper.”
Steve Martin, Actor and Writer, Dead Men Don’t Wear Plaid




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published / Required fields are marked *