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There’s no denying that I’m a homebody, for me my home is my sanctuary, my safe place, but since moving, and since moving into a shared house, I’m happier outside again. 

I’ve recently moved to a new city, and this has meant lots of exploring to discover my new home. Living in York has been an un-expected adventure. I didn’t think I’d end up living here when I decided to leave New Zealand but it’s a town full of history and interesting stories that make for a great place for a writer to explore and learn more. 

Being outside recently when the air has been cool and crisp and with a hint of warmth has also been refreshing. I’m learning that Autumn in England is one of my favourite times of year, along with Spring. 

Exploring my home county once again has fuelled my imagination. I remember when I was younger and I’d walk through the local woods on my way to school and I’d see in my imagination great battles taking place between Elves and Men (I may have been a bit obsessed with Lord of the Rings as a teenager), recently I visited Skipton Castle and had a similar experience, wondering what it would be like to be a character walking round a castle and what their story would be. 

Getting outside of our usual space and our normal routine helps restart some of the creativity that can get lost in the day to day churn of life. We need space to think, to dream and create and being in environments that inspire that creativity is something to be encouraged. 

Being outside is also good for mental health, the other week I took a walk to a park I hadn’t been to before, and while it was in a city, I had found a spot where quietness dwelled, except for the sound of birds singing in the trees. It was quite serene and provided some mental respite from a world that seems to be constantly demanding attention. Tuning out and turning off for a while, even if it’s for an afternoon walk will make you feel better. 

So go explore your outside, and see if it helps you come up with a new idea, or makes you feel just that little bit better.