Good Friday to you, my Inklings, thank you for stopping by. Now, you may have guessed from the tentacles on my banner and the fact that I call myself “The Octopus” that I take a great deal of inspiration from nature. In particular, I view the octopus as a marvelous mascot for wordsmiths everywhere and not just because they can squirt ink (but that’s totally part of it).
Octopuses (that’s right, the preferred plural is octopuses! Not octopi, octopodes, or even octopeople) like to collect things. They’ve been seen piling stones into protective fences before they go to sleep and amassing all sorts of crustacean shells and coral bits and anything they find interesting or useful. Some researchers have called this collecting and arranging behavior “fortress building”. Others, due to the eclectic nature of the collections, call these mysterious museums “octopus gardens”.
Now, as writers, we really shouldn’t surround our workspace with the discarded remnants of our food (white cheddar cheetos bags go in the trash!) so a literal application of this habit may be less than helpful. However, I have noticed that I have more than a few near-requirements and writing rituals that serve as my own octopus’ garden. Continue reading