Thursday, August 9, 2012

Lessons from the Violin

This week, I am quite busy. I am attending a Suzuki Institute with my oldest son. For those of you who have never attended a Suzuki Institute, I will tell you, it is quite an amazing experience! Each day, my son gets to take a technique class, a master class, a repertoire class and a rhythm class.

More advanced students are taking music reading, debut orchestra, intermediate orchestra and advanced orchestra. And there are recitals-- a daily honors recital, special evening recitals and an ending recital where all the students will perform.

It is incredible to walk around a college campus filled with so many young musicians! And the teachers have so many techniques for helping their students grow and have fun with the violin (or the viola or the cello or the bass).

Being in such a wonderful artistic environment makes me think about the ideal environment for writing:

1. Just as I make time to practice violin with my son, I must make time for my own writing,

2. Just like his practice sessions don't need to be long, mine don't either. Short, regular sessions devoted to writing or to violin are great. Time can really add up!

3. A big dose of inspiration is very valuable! In Suzuki, it's this institute and regular opportunities to perform at recitals. That inspiration can help you make it through the regular daily practice.

For writing, I must give myself similar inspiration! The conference I went to in April gave me a much needed boost of writing energy. And this year I really want to make it to my local SCBWI chapter's amazing monthly meetings. (Last year, violin group class for my son got in the way. :o) )

Looking forward to a productive and inspiring year! (Are there other lessons we can learn from the violin-- or other arts?)


  1. Recently I read about an artist who makes it a habit to work on at least a couple of paintings at a time. He explained that when he got stuck with one, he moved over to work on another one.

    For the same reason, I have multiple writing projects going at the same time and I suspect many others work this way also.

  2. That's interesting, Gale! II also like to work on several writing projects at the same time, but I never imagined an artist might do the same thing with working on several paintings at once.

  3. I love the idea of working in short bursts as well as long ones. I've recently started carrying a large notebook with me for just that reason.

  4. That's great, J.A.! I tend to be so bad at making use of small spaces of time. But I've got a lot of them! So if I can just make good use of them, it should really help my productivity. (A large notebook sounds awesome!)