Sunday, January 24, 2010

Moment of inhale


Rocks shift. Clacking, grating underfoot. Overhead, two gulls flap and screech at the wind. The air is filled with wild hints of briny depths.
Breakers rear and roar, then finish with a swish and hiss. Fingers of white water drag small rocks in a clattering mass.
Everyone is looking for what the sea spit out. Kelp is strewn like golden entrails. A few tough shells, built for battering, lie spent in the tiny patches of sand.
I find a quarter, it's markings obscured by a layer of hard green and brown tarnish.
The sea gives and takes back and gives again.
Yesterday, the sea gave me setting and atmosphere for my novel-in-progress. I may not have written words in the manuscript, but I found them while I basked in the sun that followed the storms. I hope you found inspiration in those moments of inhale, too.
P.S. After posting this, I realized I should mention that I also went to a boat marina to pick up some more inspiration for that story. I wandered into a yacht dealership, not the sort of place I frequent, and met a very nice man who tried to answer my questions and gave me a magazine full of useful information and pictures. You never know what you will find by looking and reaching out. *smiles*

34 comments:

Jemi Fraser said...

The sea is so powerful and so generous! No wonder is has been the inspiration for so much art over the years :)

Shannon O'Donnell said...

Tricia, I absolutely LOVE that top picture! The close-up detail of the kelpy stuff and the rocks, with the foam breakers in the backdrop...WOW. I would pay money for a photo like that (and so would a million other people). Gorgeous! :-)

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Jemi: For sure. I get great personal and creative motivation from the sea, and spend hours entranced by other people's sea art.

Shannon: Wow. You are the second person to say something like that about my photos. I guess I think of my blog as a bit like a magazine where I shoot photos to go with my words, and, of course, I did earn money for photos when I was a journalist. But, still, it's so rewarding personally to have you say that!

storyqueen said...

On Friday when I drove by the beach to pick up my daughter, I drove through a swirling mass of foamy bits flying through the air, quite literally spit out by the sea.

So weird, but beautiful.

You've got to be nearing the end of the WIP...good luck!!!

Shelley

Donna said...

Love your "golden entrails" line. I'm so glad you wandered . . .

Anna C. Morrison said...

Sounds like a productive day connecting deeply with nature. Good for you!

Wendy said...

I love the sea, I can hear it out my window right now.

It's a great place to go for atmosphere, I've done it as well. There are some things you need to remind yourself of to recreate them properly.

I love the forest too, it always inspires me.

I love those photo's, especially the wet stones. They're so evocative.

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Sheley: Oh, I love the imagery of foamy bits flying in the air. I like the foamy bits when they're white and not brown. ;) I've still got a ways to go but I feel pretty good about where I am.

Donna: It was much needed wandering. I was surprised to realize that just sitting in the sunshine staring at some boats was unusual for me these days. It felt good to just be at ease.

Anna: It was productive in a laid-back way, which was a treat.

Wendy: Lucky you to hear the sea when you like. I love the look of the wet stones, too.

Paul Greci said...

Thanks for the inspiring photos and words. My current WIP is set on a wilderness coastline.

Char said...

beautiful write and you're so right, if you reach out, there many waiting to share.

V. S said...

This post reminded me that I have yet to overcome my fear of the ocean. Sigh. It is so lovely, I wish I could enter it's world without looking back.

Yvonne said...

Oh, and I thought it was spaghetti!:) Seriously, I find any body of water to be a source of inspiration, from our little pond to Lake Huron to the Ocean. But the kelp piles were quite smelly the last time we were on the Pacific. But maybe that's because it was Venice Beach.

It's fun to be so absorbed in a WIP.

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Paul: Knowing the kind of wilderness you have outside your door, I can't wait to see your story.

Char: It is true. I continue to be amazed how helpful people will be if you give them a chance.

Victoria: I am sorry the fear is so intense. Of course, there are always gorgeous pictures and very solid shores to stand on. :)

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Yvonne: You snuck in whilst I was typing. You know, it just might be somebody's spaghetti! ;)
Venice Beach is my old hometown and still a place I go a lot to be with my daughter and other family and friends. I don't know that it's any smellier kelp there than other places. The sea can have a strong aroma at times.

Liza said...

I love the clattering rocks at the ocean. I tried so hard to put the sound into words recently...but the sound is clatter, and it's lovely, just like your post.

Bish Denham said...

Beautiful description. Put me right there with you walking on the rocky shore. And under water, the click, clack and hiss of rocks and water can be heard as well. Like a lullaby

Natalie said...

I always feel inspired when I go to the ocean too.

I love your writing Tricia. You make me feel like I'm there.

Tess said...

I could feel the mist on my face and taste the salted air on my lips. Well written.

oh, I miss the beach!

Linda Kage said...

You have such interesting places to find inspriation. It's fun to read about them and see pictures too.

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Liza: Ha! Glad to have found the word you needed. :)

Bish: I love your underwater comments (so useful to me at the moment). Thanks!

Natalie: Well, I'm happy to take you along! Thanks so much.

Tess: I'm afraid I couldn't move too far from a sea of some sort. I'm glad I could bring it to you imagery anyway.

Linda: Nature inspires me, and it is endless in its variations. :)

Solvang Sherrie said...

Golden entrails...perfect!
The beach is my favorite place for inspiration.

Carolina Valdez Miller said...

Oh my word, breathtaking!! I want to go here. And what beautiful words to accompany your amazing photographs...so glad your found inspiration by the sea. And thank you for passing it on.

By the way, I left a little award for you at my blog ;)

http://carol-in-print.blogspot.com/2010/01/in-mood.html

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Sherrie: Thanks! ;)

Carolina: Oooo, thanks for that description! And I'll hop on over.

Lisa and Laura said...

I wish we lived close enough to draw inspiration from the ocean. The only thing that comes to mind is Lake Erie. Yeah. I guess this is where our imaginations must come into play.

Aimee said...

This is a beautiful post, tricia! I love the picture...and reading this, having recently moved inland, really makes me miss the coast and its seaspray :(

Donna Hole said...

The reason I picked the Mendocino Coast Writers Conference for my first ever conference was the lure of Fort Bragg. It's been two years, and I'm dying to go again.

This was a beautiful reminder of the time. Thanks.

....dhole

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

LiLa: I'm holding in a bwahahaha. Sorry, but your Lake Erie comment gives me giggles.

Aimee: Welcome. I'm sorry it made you sad, but thanks for the appreciation.

Donna: Glad to inspire memories. :)

Robyn Campbell said...

Pat, these pictures mesmerize me. Especially the top two. I am walking along looking for what the sea spit out. Better yet, I'm riding one of my horses. And we watch the sun as it hits the water, even more sparkling than diamonds. I mean this is what true beauty is. Thanks for your lovely photos. They make me happy. And they make me yearn for my beautiful Keys even more.

I missed you during unplug week. Hope all is well and the writing is taking you to places you love to be. :0)

Diana Paz said...

I adore the ocean, the beach, everything about it makes me happy and excited. Thanks for the pics and the great post :)

Elana Johnson said...

Ah, we all need a moment like this. Thanks for sharing yours with us.

MG Higgins said...

Beautiful, Tricia. I love the beach after a storm.

(BTW, did you take the picture of the seaweed with your phone camera? It has an amazing depth of field!)

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Robyn: Nice to have you back and thank you! Sometimes I want to unplug like you do but then things like this pop up and I want to blog about them. 'tis a conundrum.

Diana: Yes, exactly--happy and excited. It stirs emotion.

Elana: I love to to do it and find out others enjoy it, too.

Mel: Yes! I took it with that cell phone. I continue in amazement, and it's so handy just shoved in a pocket.

Julie Dao said...

I love the sea. It's the ultimate novel setting because it can be anything you want it to be: dangerous, beautiful, wild, mysterious, treacherous, romantic, mystical. Beautiful photos!

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Julie: Well said! It is all that and more.