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Of Dancing & Writing

Listening to: Lorde – Pure Heroine

Mood: Peaceful

I know I talk about writing and travel a lot on this blog, because they are two things that I love immensely, but one of my other loves in life in dancing. I grew up dancing ballet, jazz, and tap. I did dance-like activities in high school. My youth was full of dancing. It was fun, but it was also something I did because my parents put me in it. I didn’t have a choice at first, though I enjoyed it, but eventually it became something I decided to do on my own.

As an adult, I’m a devotee of ballet, contemporary, and tribal belly dancing. While I’ll always love ballet, and the style’s precise, beautiful movements, I’ve grown to appreciate the less rigid contemporary style and improvised tribal belly dance style. In contemporary, the movements take their cues from ballet but have more fluid and emotional feel to them. In tribal belly dancing, the music inspires the movements, and a troupe of dancer dance as one.

So why am I telling you about dancing and what the hell does it have to do with writing? Well, because I write the way that I dance. I appreciate a good outline to give me guidance as I write the story (a choreographed dance with fine movements like ballet), but I like the emotionality (contemporary) and ability to take the story wherever it needs to go (tribal belly) that comes with knowing you have an outline but veering off course because it makes sense to the story. I think the types of dance I focus on and the way I write my stories are incredibly similar. I like to know where I’m taking my characters, but I like the freedom to change my mind half way through because it just feels right.

The movement of body and mind are freeing and cathartic and a way for me to emotionally express myself openly—which doesn’t come easy for me otherwise.

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