I am forming an idea. It isn't a new idea. It isn't even my idea, but it is something that is taking shape in my brain right now. It is one of those things that is too unformed to explain just yet, but it is pushing it's way into everything I see.
So, today, I am thinking about ideation itself. When you get an idea, when it won't leave you alone, what is to be done about it. There seem to be a few options: one could become tortured and dramatic about it, one could become its champion talking it over with everyone you can corner, or one could let it go.
I took a writing class a few years ago, and one of the weeks the topic of discussion was mental composting. It was the process of absorbing scenes, people, images, and other writable material, and allowing it to sink into the compost bin of your mind. It is a process of trust. Instead of trying to scribble down every image that strikes you, you trust that, if you turn your attention to a thing, the essence of that thing will become part of the richness of your mind.
I realize some of those reading might question the richness of my mind.
Bring it. My mind is totally rich. As long as I don't have to remember what I was doing at any given moment.
Mental composting is the most liberating writing technique I have ever encountered. I have four kids home with me all of the time. I don't have very many minutes to sit and craft beautiful sentences any old time I want. But to know that my main job is to turn my attention to what is happening around me is enough to make me weep.
I think the same thing is true with ideas. I am so tempted to birth an idea before I have let it form because I am excited.
But this time, something in my gut is saying, let it rot, let it fall apart, and, out of it, something will grow.