Thursday, May 12, 2011

National Doodle Day--Who Knew?

Well, I, for one, did not know that today is National Doodle Day. (That's Neil Gaiman's Doodle. Looks remarkably like something a Junior Hall drew in the 4th grade. )

But I kinda like this doodle idea.

I know most of us think of doodling as drawing little squiggles or curves, making silly little pictures on a piece of paper. We doodle in a class when the teacher gets boring. We doodle at a conference when the speaker gets repetitive. We doodle at church when the sermon drags.

Or maybe that's just me. The point is, most of the time, we doodle when our mind's not completely occupied. But have you ever let your mind doodle? When you're occupied with some boring chore, like pulling weeds, or painting outside furniture, or scrubbing a tub, haven't you let your mind wander? Sort of like a mental doodle?

I doodle out a plot problem while I'm planting a row of pansies. I doodle out an idea for a column while I'm washing my hair. I doodle a character's traits while I'm unloading the dishwasher. When I mentally doodle, thoughts ramble about here and there. I may not have a substantive solution, but I will have a starting point, or perhaps a couple of points to develop.

The problem with mentally doodling is that, if you're not careful, your wonderful doodle will go poof! Unlike your squiggles from your 10th grade notebook (Cathy + Tommy 4ever), thoughts and ideas may not stick around unless you take a moment to write them out.

Although, honestly, I have a couple doodled notes that make absolutely no sense to me now. Sort of like Tommy 4ever. I have NO idea who Tommy was.