Something broke. That’s about the only way to describe it. About thirty years ago some underlying logic in our reality simply failed. Maybe we broke physics with the latest in bigger and brighter colliders, maybe god just died of loneliness. Whatever the reason, the immutable rules of cause and effect, the division between what the real and the imaginary, all seemed to begin to fail.
The dead don’t always stay dead anymore, you have to convince them. As for children, well let’s just say that there is nothing more terrifying than a child with an overactive imagination.
Sights and Sounds
Everyone likes a view, cityscapes, forests and the ocean can all be a source of creativity, but if it’s not an option put up some posters that are going to inspire you to hammer out those words. The same goes for sounds, some people find them inspiring and do their best writing to music, the sounds of nature or the cacophony of the city. For others, sound just gets in the way. Work out what is right for you.
If you write during the day make sure you have lots of natural light. There is nothing better for the creative mind (and mental health) than getting enough natural daylight. If you write at night make sure your light source doesn’t buzz or flicker. Some people get headaches just from the fluorescent lights, others don’t care.
Whether you’re working under natural light or artificial make sure your not being blinded by it. A nice cheat can be to write out things on paper during the day and transfer/edit that to your computer at night. Think of it as a quick and dirty revision process.
If you can’t sit still, are being sat on by pets, or ache, you’re not going to be getting a lot of work done. You don’t necessarily need a desk, a bean-bag and notepad might be right for you, just make sure your body won’t be constantly disturbing your mind.
Avoid them. Lock off facebook and Tumblr (there are apps for that) leave you phone in the other room and uninstall games from your work computer. Make sure you have the option of locking off your space to really get lost in the writing process.
Your reference books and materials should be kept close at hand. You don’t want to have to break your flow by taking the time to search through other rooms for what you need.
There are two schools of thought on this. One is to keep everything nearby. Carrot sticks or other
not so healthy items just an arms length away. Again so you don’t break your flow. The other school of thought is to keep those snacks the hell away from your keyboard/notes. Not only does this avoid the inevitable “hey what happened to the rest of the packet?” moments, but it also means you are regularly getting up to stretch your legs and in doing so get the blood and creative juices flowing. If you’re anything like me you’ll get up and boil the jug three or four times before actually remembering to make the coffee before it gets cold again.
It’s that time of the year again when we give up the ghosts of lesser projects and clear the screen for the latest NaNo (National Novel Writing Month) glossolalia. Pens to hand, notepad on standby, it’s time to put that ‘work in progress’ on hold and give a new idea a chance to grow.
Is anyone else out there in ‘definitely a Writer, but not yet an Author’ land joining me in this madness? If so, share your screen names (mine is shockinglyJW Arlock) and we can join forces against the power of internet distractions and writers block!