For starters, my stone isn’t actually smooth. Well, not all smooth, anyway. It’s striated, and the striations, in addition to adding visual interest, feel like ridges as I rub the stone. I found this particular stone on a walk one day during my lunch break at work.
A friend and I often went for walks over lunch. Our university was in an affluent neighborhood, and we enjoyed walking around, looking at the houses and the well-curated yards and gardens. My friend, from time to time, would stop to smell the proverbial roses, but I never did. I mean, I stopped. I didn’t leave her in the dust while I plodded ahead. I didn’t smell the roses, though. I didn’t feel it was prudent for my black female self to trespass and risk a deleterious outcome, just to smell some flowers, The day my friend asked me why I never smelled the flowers with her prompted a really good conversation. I think about that a lot.
What I did do with my friend on our walks was collect nature’s artifacts – an enormous leaf, a twig with shedding bark, a striated stone. One of our students often laughed at us when we came back into the office showing off our newly collected pieces on our desks.
I’ve had this stone going on about 10 years now, and as much as I’ve rubbed it, I’ve not rubbed away the striated ridges. Actually, I find the stone more and more appealing as time elapses, much like I continue to grow in appreciation of my friend who still adventures with me in nature.
So the other day, I prayed and rubbed my stone as my writing prep. I found both activities calming and centering, and that peace reflected in through my writing. I wondered what my MC would do when facing stressful situations (and there are many in her tale). In essence, my prep work helped me dive into my MC’s personality in ways I hadn’t before. As it turns out, she likes to dance. Who’d’ve thunk?
I give Prayer + Smooth Stone a 12/10.
What has kickstarted your writing lately?