Recently, during a phase of writer’s block, I took to the sofa to watch the HBO series Lipstick Jungle. The story of 3 Manhattan forty-something women and their glamorous (and surprisingly complex) lives. I thought I would dip in for a couple of episodes and try and shake off my malaise. Oh no. 3 episodes in and I was hooked! Unlike Sex & the City which just globalized Jimmy Choo shoes and showed ever more ridiculous outfits, this series actually looked beneath the super glossy surface, and dug into the E word – the women’s Emotional lives. Having woolfed down series I, I found myself downloading the entire series 2 via iTunes.
What was actually going on here I wondered? I was no closer to finding my own story, yet deeply moved and entranced by 3 other womens’ stories. Sweet distraction definitely, but something underneath the gloss was bothering me Hmm.
I took a break over the weekend to leave the city, and declined almost immediately into sharp withdrawal symptoms from not having an internet connection. This time I really did feel like Miranda on her honeymoon, stranded in the country with only 1 bar left on her phone. There sure was no gloss on this weekend. What it did show me though was how quickly I can lose myself in someone else’s story, which is great if you are Candace Busnhell and you’ve just nailed another reader!
And here was me thinking that all those personal development gurus who tell you to ‘secure a media blackout’ to protect your fragile ideas were just talking about CNN (constant negative news). Ha again.
When I returned to the city I carefully boxed up my dvds of Lipstick Jungle and put them in a box, in the cupboard, right at the back, behind some books. Out of sight. It’s rations from now on. It was fun while it lasted girls, but the really funny thing is, since I came back to the city my writing mojo has returned!