28 Apr How Not Working Helps My Work: Amy Mertz
During the day, I help our clients tell the stories of their businesses. At night, I tell the stories of fictional characters in an epic fantasy realm called Widdershins. My first book, The Demon, the Hero, and the City of Seven, is a humorous fantasy adventure novel about a snarky demon and an inept human hero who are (much to their dismay) magically bonded for eternity.
That’s right. My work and my hobby are both writing. But there is a symbiotic relationship between the two.
Fantasy requires a lot of descriptive details because you’re grounding your reader in a world that does not exist. Details mean ideas, and ideas can come from anywhere. My brain is always on the lookout for a cool word or interesting creature that might work well in a book. (Fun fact: I keep a list of these in my Evernote app. Before I actually knew Tony I’d only seen his name and thought that “The Kraayenbrink” would be the perfect name for a menacing sea creature.)
But the upshot of this is that my brain doesn’t limit that sort of input to just fantasy fiction ideas. It’s constantly looking for inspiration of all kinds. I’d say that at least six times a year I come across something random and end up sending Tony an urgent message saying, “Do you have a second? I have an idea.”
That has led to This Week at IFC, Content Crash Course, IFC Co, giveaways, improved workflows and a few other projects that I can’t talk about yet but am very excited about.
So yeah, it’s all writing. But it’s just different enough to keep things fresh, and keep my brain on high alert for things that might help IFC.