On seeing only rain in your writing


Living in a valley of vineyards surrounded by modest mountain ranges means that my neighbors and I enjoy some interesting weather. Most days are mild; other swelter. But there are always cool breezes that sweep through just before the sun sets on the day.



In all, it’s quite temperate. But when it rains, it really rains. Perhaps the mountains are the culprit, trapping the weather and keeping it in place so that it hovers something fierce.

Read: On finding inspiration in the sun

So often I have looked out the window on a rain-drenched morning and delayed my commute. Impossible, I think. Too much rain to drive anywhere. It will take all day for the streets and breezeways to recover. Best to just sit this one out.

Read: Introduce Mother Nature into your writing for a change

But, then I get on the road, drive for 10 minutes and find that the skies are cleared, the roads are dry and rainbows are mushrooming.

How does that happen? Yes, I know that rain here, doesn’t necessarily mean that rain is everywhere. What I wonder is – how do I keep forgetting that?

Read: Be an innovator: Write with imagination

But, of course, we know the answer. Sometimes it’s hard to think and see outside of our current circumstances. Sometimes all we see is rain. As writers, our job is to see what is not seen. To imagine what is not known. To write what we perhaps have never felt or heard or smelled. Writing requires a conscious decision – a real cognitive effort to step outside of what we know to be true and see the world for what we do not.

Are you there? Or are you only seeing rain?

Kerri S. Mabee is managing editor at and founder of Breeze Media & Communications. Learn more about her at

Kerri S. Mabee

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