So we sit, bang our heads off the edge of our desks trying desperately to get out the right words, and to focus; we lock ourselves away, tell our kids to go to the movies or the mall, ask our husbands or wives to go to the movies or the mall. We search for the stillness of our minds. Yet as is my nature I'm curious. How do others keep it flowing.
I myself use music, no lyrics generally trance, or classical when i write. What do you use?
Complete silence is the perfect stuff for me!!
As a writer I do two things, read and write.
If I get a little sluggish in my writing I go back to a book, magazine article or something I found interesting and inspiring and stir up those creative juices again.
If I’m looking for a particular moment, or emotion I might listen to some music or pop in a DVD and find that one scene that brings me as close to what I’m looking for as I can.
Inspiration takes on many forms. Each of us has our own muse.
Same here - i usually watch a movie that has some similar elements to my story and try to put my characters into the movie while i'm watching it. I try to imagine what they would do in the certain situation, if they would avoid the mistakes or make them - stuff like that.
Silence also helps too, but my mind is so scattered that i have problems getting my mind to think about the right things lol
Everyday things. Mundane. Insignificant. Things others would overlook. If I just let myself go and not overanalyze I can keep it flowing.
So far I haven't had a problem. My wife says my head's so full of garbage it can't help but spill out. I just write everything then sort through it to find the edible stuff. I get about one good hub out of every ten.
It's similar for me. With a lifetime of "build-up" of thoughts, I just put my brain on print - and out it all comes. I can write any time of of day or night, in solititude or in the middle of the house. I write by tv that I'm not really watching, radio that I AM listening to, and a cat that stops by to stare up at me so I'll fill her dish. I guess I pretty much use coffee and anger a good part of the time. Then I use the need to write/think about something more pleasant for the other part of the time.
In all seriousness, one thing that I think keeps me from experiencing "block" is knowing how patiently "incubate" material before I "put my brain on print". If I try to write before I'm finished incubating material, I'll run into problem. Incubating can take anywhere from minutes to decades for me ( ), depending on what I'm writing. If I've been hired to write something for someone else, I still need a certain amount of "mini-incubation time" before I start writing.
For me, if I keep feeding in the raw material for "incubating" there's always something that's just reaching its "ready" stage. If I don't have something "ready to come out of the incubator" I'll just write half-baked stuff about subjects I don't care about anyway.
BUT... here's the catch to all that: If I'm exhausted, too stressed for too long a time, or seem to have low blood sugar levels or else low "blood caffeine" levels - nothing's going to happen - ever. Here's another problem: I've found that I sometimes just get sick of hearing my own "writing voice" in my head. If you write too much for too long (over a period of years in my case) it's like listening to your own "blah blah blah" for years. I don't know about anyone else, but I sometimes just get so I need to tell myself to shut the h__ up for a few months, for goodness sake!
Then - I come to the forums to get to read/hear what other people's voices are saying; but then I'll see something that gets me going on yet another "blah blah blah" thing and I'm back to hearing my own voice again! When that's going on I think the only way to "set it all right again" is to get away from writing for a few days, weeks, or however long it's going to take. The odd thing about this is that it's almost as if someone (like me) who generally doesn't ever get blocked will eventually, by virtue of not ever having block, face a far more serious kind of block once too much writing eventually takes its toll.
My Hubs have actually pretty much been the product of my having already gotten into that "half-baked mode" two years ago, and needing to find a place to write where what I wrote about didn't matter all that much (and it shows). I have a couple of books that have been incubating and seem ready to "hatch", though - so all isn't as bleak as it seems (maybe).
As Eliza Doolittle said (but in a very different context): Words, words, words - I'm so SICK of words!!!
If you are intelligent enough and gregarious enouph with your thoughts, then hub them. Careful though. There a couple of hints for success in writing. Tell it - don't say it. Another, don't overuse words like "like" and "just." Keep it simple enough for a ten year old reading level - but don't worry about the occasional large word or philosophy - kids are smart too. Does anyone have more writing suggestions? Anyway, I always have a message to get out. I think we all do. So get cracking. Empty your brain.
I hyper-focus and tune out the world and everything outside my office door. I like silence while I write. However, sometimes I like the gently hum of a fan (mechanical fan). I often look up and gaze out the window (on the top floor). Sometimes my spouse does not understand how I can stay in a room for hours and hours without talking to him or others and how I can just type and type and type. It's soothing to me---it's my therapy---it can be a spiritual experience of self-awareness and other-awareness.
Honestly, most of the time that I am writing, the kids have just gone to bed or everyone is watching a movie that I am not really into. I don't mind the humming of family activity or the loud ruckus of an action movie blaring on the surround sound. I am with my family, I am content, and I write. Of course sometimes it's nice to get that time of solitude when the kids go down and the hubby isn't home yet.
For hubs/articles I need silence.
For creative works, I prefer soundtracks I think are relevant to the tone of the work (sad, happy, scary...).
I suck at keeping the flow going. I really need to take people's advice and just write, write, write and sort out and proof later. I'd be more prolific and successful that way. So, time to give it a go (especially with my book).
I also prefer perfect silence and the least amount of disruption possible.
Aside from that, I've also found that I need to be as free from stress as I can--too much to worry about or think about gives me writer's block big time. As does loss of confidence, doubt about my path, the practicality of it all, etc.
Having a steady income also helps--just enough to cover the basics.
I think Meg Chittenden summed it up very well when she said:
"Many people hear voices when no one is there. Some of them are called 'mad' and are shut up in rooms where they stare at the walls all day. Others are called 'writers' and they do pretty much the same thing."
I prefer to shut myself up in my room. It doesn't help if I 'turn off my ear', because someone always finds a way to communicate to me via signs, gestures, or written notes. That, and I do enjoy some noise... music, perhaps, and listening to people and dogs moving in the house. Just as long as the noise isn't directed at me, to where I have to respond. Yeah, shutting myself up in my room with a laptop works wonders, and I rarely get to do that. Having doubts about that 30 hubchallenge now.
it depends. sometimes I take walks, go to the park, beach, someplace with lots of space and inspiration, places to clear thoughts and make room for more. sometimes I take a small notebook or just do a voice memo with the ipod. I do a lot of writing outside. it doesn't have to be necessarily quiet. sometimes I want to be around people so I'll write at a local cafe. I think I learned how to focus working with young children. you have to or go crazy.
Sheer persistance honestly. I work 40 hours a week and after that I spend time with the family most of the time. There is usually a lot of noise going on and the TV is within view. *sigh* I just re-focus and keep going.
If I don't know what I'm writing, I just make something up and hope it doesn't suck. Usually stuff gets unstuck and it starts flowing again.
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