January cold has come to roost here in the North. It makes everything so much more complicated. Just to step outside and scatter ice melt on my frozen driveway takes about forty-five minutes of preparation and just as many layers of clothing. My mornings runs become afternoon runs because of a negative wind chill factor, and even schools get a two hour delay so that poorly bundled kids don’t get frostbite at the bus stops.
Still, it could be worse. My boyfriend and I recently drove farther north to a city that sits on one of the Great Lakes. We left bare ground and clean streets to find a winter wonderland complete with several inches of snow and neighborhood streets full of ice.
Have any of you writers out there found that your current weather/season finds its way unconsciously into whatever you’re working on? My writing lately has been full of the bitter cold that snaps the mucus in your nose as soon as you go outside. My characters get surprised by the twittering of a leftover song bird because this was my surprise on my lunch walk the other day.
Perhaps this is just part of the process of writing what you know. Or perhaps it demonstrates that the creative process is always collecting and cataloging for the moment when that perfect— something!— can slip into place.