A few years ago a friend sent me a copy of Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert. In it, one of the things she talks about is being open to stories; the idea that stories are told through you as opposed to being generated and owned by you. This resonated with me and while I’m in the process of starting a new project, I'm simultaneously finding ways of opening myself up to the voices that want to be heard, the stories that need to be told, to whatever comes next.
One of my favourite ways to do this is by walking. Sometimes I consciously listen to whatever's around me and literally stop to smell the flowers. Sometimes I'll listen to a podcast or music or the news. But it's a fine line, the balance between paying attention to what's going on, what's happening in the world versus the work of emptying out, of creating space, of being open.
“Leave room in your mind for stories to rise up in you. Don't constantly fill your mind with other people's stories, other people's thoughts. Leave space, and quiet, for your own.” - Nikki Grimes.