The Creative Side of Mowing Your Lawn


When I die, I’ve told my wife, I want them to find me sitting on my riding lawnmower in the back yard. Why?

First, it’s a good place to get fresh air and sunshine.

Second, it’s about the only place I can find peace and quiet anymore (even with the 4 hp. Briggs and Stratton engine roaring in my ear).

But most importantly, it’s one of the places I get my ideas for stories. Right now, I am playing hooky from mowing my lawn because I got the idea (as shaky as it is) for this blog. Earlier I stopped to tweak a scene on my current novel.

And that’s not ideal, stopping in the middle of mowing the lawn. Your significant other might find issue with that.

But the point is: mundane activities such as mowing the lawn, raking leaves and washing dishes are great ways to loosen up your brain and let that creative right side run naked through the daisies (metaphorically, not literally).

Another way I get ideas for stories is through dreams. I was on a short story jag a year or so ago, and I was constantly looking for stories, and many of them started with dreams I had. On the other hand, last night I dreamed that a squirrel ate my pet hamster, so I am still wondering how to turn that into a legitimate story….

But I love where we live, and the way we live. Our house isn’t fancy; Shelly has often said she wished we could move into a brand-new house. But I know that when it came down to it, she would choose more acreage and a big old house rather than a tiny, immaculate new home in the suburbs.

And besides, where would I get my ideas if I didn’t have a lawn to mow?

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