So I’ve recently resolved to take a substantial walk each night this week. The idea (though walks are in no way foreign to my way of life as is) comes from a short article I read on Slate the other day. The article essentially looks into the fact that many famous composers (Tchaikovsky, Beethoven, and, my favorite, Erik Satie, among others) all took long walks fairly regularly (occasionally obsessively). I’ve long touted the benefits of walking for my own thinking, be it about music or otherwise, and, as I’ve hit a rather slow patch in my writing recently, I’m deciding to try walking as a remedy. These walks each have to be at least 30 minutes long, taken alone without music, texting, or other distractions, and, preferably, will take place late at night. I’m only two days in, but here are my results as of yet.
Sunday: Took a walk during the late afternoon, enthralled by an all-too-conscious comparison between myself and the other solitary-strollers of yore. Because of this, I begin to overthink the whole thing. “Wait a second, did Erik Satie actively think about his compositions while he took walks? Or was it more of a repose from the workings before the walk? I wonder how fast he walked.” Of course replicating the rhythmic patterns of his walking wouldn’t help me get any closer to capturing his sense of melody, but I digress. Walk overall went well, but was too self-aware and early in the day for any real breakthrough. Did come up with a line or two for the “All I Know” song (working title based on the phrase that seems to match the chorus best), so that’s good.
Monday: Took a walk much later in the evening (starting around 10) and had more success. It wasn’t super long, but I got a number of things sorted out about the narrative I want for the “All I Know” song. Also, it was crazy beautiful. Had just rained, and I’ve always been a sucker for street lamps with mist around them. The mist did make a man walking his dog seem pretty terrifying, though. Upon returning to the house I wrote about a page and a half of lyrics, so that’s pretty wonderful. They’ll need to be tuned up, of course, but at least so far, this walking thing is proving a pretty good idea.
More to come as the week progresses.
Also, I’m tired, and my writing may or may not be coming off as mega-pretentious and/or cryptic. I apologize. I may or may not delete this in the morning.
Also. Here’s a song I’ve been listening to recently. It’s crazy beautiful.