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Fruitbat
10-12-2011, 03:22 AM
So, for those who run hot and cold with writing, do you notice that any certain surrounding factors are in place when you do get on a hot streak with it?

My theory is that if those associated factors exist and are identified, then maybe they can be done deliberately, and... the burning urge to write your heart out will be artificially induced.

Maybe? :)

virtue_summer
10-12-2011, 03:39 AM
Routine and reading. I don't know if it helps at all because it is pretty standard advice, but when I'm following a routine that includes writing something every day the writing flows in a way it doesn't otherwise. And when I'm reading writers and stories that I enjoy, I tend to get inspired and work on my own stories more.

Filigree
10-12-2011, 04:30 AM
It's not foolproof, but I've found a better-than normal chance of going into a full-on writing binge if I have at least two hours of uninterrupted time, and I've had a chance to mull the plot around a bit beforehand. The longer the set-up time, and the more hours I have to write, the easier it is to hammer out that wished-for 5K a day.

Knowing that I can do it at all, courtesy of two glorious months last spring, gives me the confidence to shake off writers block when I have the chance to write.

Also, the more critical non-writing projects I have, the more I *want* to be writing, or at least thinking about writing.

FabricatedParadise
10-12-2011, 04:50 AM
The more I write, the more I want to write. Also, reading books by my fav authors is a must, but I never read the genre or age Group I'm writing, because it throws of my own stuff. Music. I go to playlist.com or pull up iTunes and create a playlist for the mood I want to write. If it's all lovey dovey, I pick that type of music. If it's hardcore, I throw on some slipknot or spineshank,etc. And having uninterrupted time (and a snack) helps.

Jamesaritchie
10-12-2011, 05:05 AM
So, for those who run hot and cold with writing, do you notice that any certain surrounding factors are in place when you do get on a hot streak with it?

My theory is that if those associated factors exist and are identified, then maybe they can be done deliberately, and... the burning urge to write your heart out will be artificially induced.

Maybe? :)

If you need a burning urge to write your heart out to sit down and write, you'll never get much writing done.

Outside factors, music, whatever, may help with mood, but I'd also say that if you need outside factors in order to sit down and write, you're in trouble.

Writing itself has to induce the urge to write, not any outside factors.

Al Stevens
10-12-2011, 05:10 AM
Everybody's different. Use what works for you.

Soccer Mom
10-12-2011, 05:13 AM
Deadlines make me write like a fiend.

Bubastes
10-12-2011, 05:19 AM
Soccer Mom beat me to it.

scarletpeaches
10-12-2011, 03:21 PM
This is something I've thought about a lot recently, Boobtwat. Wait, we're not in the bordello now. Okay, Fruitbat it is.

For me, after a period of not writing, the first thousand words of a new writing session are the hardest. They're like pulling teeth.

Last night, I forced out roughly 600 words, but pushed on, kept going. It got easier, and before I went to bed I had another thousand words down.

My 'in flow' writing is no better or worse than my 'pulling teeth' pages, but I sure prefer the former for sheer enjoyment as I write.

I've written under all circumstances -- laptop or netbook and longhand, while tired and wide awake, healthy and brewing a migraine, at home and in a cafe or library.

For me the trick is having enough time free to crank out that first thousand, after which I can pretty much write in any circumstances.

Deadlines are hellish. Earlier this year I had around four in the space of a fortnight and got so stressed my head nearly burst with a number of chain migraines. Never again. One or two? Fine. But four in such a short time period with my stomach lining making a break for it and my head pounding all the while? Not a good idea.

KathleenD
10-12-2011, 04:57 PM
I have a minimum goal for each day.

Whether or not that day is fun depends on how much I got to think about the story in the hours leading up to it, and how much non-fiction writing I had to do that day.

That sounds like there's a lubrication joke in there, but I didn't mean it. ;) One might think I'm overly prone to sex metaphors given my genre, but I've found the same basic thing to be true whatever the creative act happens to be.

Phaeal
10-12-2011, 06:45 PM
Routine rules. If I write every day, I write every day.

It also pushes me into high gear to discover a much-hyped book that I think is garbage. I find I can channel the WTF outrage over that into my own writing, which is more productive than just ranting about the much-hyped book. :D

jazzman99
10-12-2011, 06:59 PM
Deadlines make me write like a fiend.

This. This is one of the reasons I end up submitting to anthologies, with their closed reading periods, more often than magazines that you can submit to any time.

StephenD
10-12-2011, 07:57 PM
when i really need it, i get my writing done in the bathroom. no clocks, no food- no distractions- just water and toilet and shower if you need it.

Filigree
10-12-2011, 09:11 PM
I second Phaeal's use of channeled outrage. If I've just finished a disappointing book, it often fuels my own work. But really great books seem to have a better positive effect on my writing: a glimpse of true craft rewarded by publishing and accolades gives me hope.

Monkey
10-12-2011, 09:48 PM
I set a time and a goal and write whether I feel like it or not. A deadline helps, so if I don't have a real one, I'll make one up and tell someone, just so I feel obligated.

For me, the first few chapters of a novel or the first few paragraphs of a short are always the hardest. But the ending--that's when I really become obsessed with the story, and my writing speed skyrockets. All that stuff in the middle...well, if it's a fast-paced scene I tend to write it faster, so I try to squeeze lots of those in. ;)

As far as real-life stuff goes...I just have to keep myself from getting too caught up in other things to write. I found that obsessing over parkour was slowing me down, so my current WIP has lots of parkour. That helps. :)

Chris P
10-12-2011, 09:58 PM
If you need a burning urge to write your heart out to sit down and write, you'll never get much writing done.

This is absolutely correct. However, as one of those "write as the spirit moves you" writers, the surest way to guarantee that I throw up my hands and walk away from writing forever is to turn it into a chore where I spend hours on it and don't enjoy it. Just because I'm not a farmer doesn't mean I can't be a gardener.

As to the OP, time in the car often lets my mind wander and come up with ideas. Other times talking out a potential scene--either by myself or to others--gets results. I'm nearly done with the second draft of the WIP, and I'm hoping visiting Nashville this weekend (where the book takes place) will inspire me to fill in the final two or three gaps.

Determination
10-12-2011, 10:01 PM
When I hear that someone I know (from online) has got an agent or a book deal. Nothing fuels my writing like good old fashioned jealously! It's not that I'm not happy for them because believe me I am, I just want to join the club too :)

Karen Junker
10-13-2011, 12:00 AM
You may not get much done if you need to feel the urge in order to write. Oh, fucking well.

May what you DO write be brilliant! May you be a Harper Lee, not a no-name who just happened to get a lot of stuff out there.

Christyp
10-13-2011, 12:42 AM
I never have a problem writing...it's writing something reader worthy which is my problem. I tend to get a bit of ADD when I write. I've found candles, playlists, and sometimes dressing like my character will actually help me get in the mood of whatever book I'm working on.

Shadow_Ferret
10-13-2011, 08:14 AM
BIC. That's the only factor.
Deadlines make me write like a fiend.

Since I'm not a professional, deadlines are meaningless to me.

AndreaGS
10-13-2011, 08:41 AM
A good outline and a minimum word goal. I find when I get the plot kinks worked out and have a chapter-by-chapter outline, the rest is just fill-in-the-blanks, and the writing comes smoothly.

It's when I don't know where I'm going that things get stopped up.

CrastersBabies
10-13-2011, 10:09 AM
Sure ritual is part of it, a routine is part of it, but I know what you mean.

When I hit my hot streaks, it's usually during a crest in my plot. Once I start building that momentum on the upswing and near the peak, I write like a friggin' crazy person.

10k words a day, multiple days in a row....

Then I watch trashy reality t.v. shows for 4 days to recharge my mind battery because it's usually completely blown by then.

I'm also useless on any decision making for a solid 24 hours. :)

What do you want for dinner?

unnggghhh

What do you think about this?

unnggghhh

Turn left or right? Green light or red light?

ungh ungh ung....

iRock
10-13-2011, 05:44 PM
So, for those who run hot and cold with writing, do you notice that any certain surrounding factors are in place when you do get on a hot streak with it?


I have days when I have to grind the words out and others days when they practically fall onto the page with little effort. And when I sit at my desk each morning, there's no telling what kind of day it will be. The routine doesn't vary; it's my brain that's contrary.

But in the end - quality-wise - one set of words is indistinguishable from the other.

OctoberLee
10-13-2011, 06:58 PM
It's not foolproof, but I've found a better-than normal chance of going into a full-on writing binge if I have at least two hours of uninterrupted time, and I've had a chance to mull the plot around a bit beforehand. The longer the set-up time, and the more hours I have to write, the easier it is to hammer out that wished-for 5K a day.


The two hour block is important to me. I used to try to write on my work lunch breaks, but I never really accomplished much. The best is when I get done with work and know I have nothing going on - it's like, "okay, I can put my phone on silent and write indefinitely." And when my upstairs friend/neighbor knocks on the door to bother me... Angryface.

There's a seasonal element for me. Something about fall/winter makes me hunker down and hibernate more than usual. Makes writing extra cozy and appealing, vs. spring/summer when the outside world calls.

I third the published trashy books comment. Whereas a really good one sucks me away from writing for two or three days and makes me despair that I could ever write anything publishable. (Robin McKinley's Sunshine does this for me on a yearly basis <3 )

Devil Ledbetter
10-13-2011, 08:05 PM
I will second the uninterrupted time and writing daily.

My writing time is frequently interrupted by my kids. When they invade my writing area I simply reply to everything they say with a monotone "I'm writing."


"The cat puked on my bed."

"I'm writing."

"Listen, I can play Eruption on this guitar."

"I'm writing."

"I'm thinking about eloping with my boyfriend."

"I'm writing."

I usually follow up with "Can you shut that door when you go?"


It takes discipline.

Christyp
10-13-2011, 08:29 PM
Sure ritual is part of it, a routine is part of it, but I know what you mean.

When I hit my hot streaks, it's usually during a crest in my plot. Once I start building that momentum on the upswing and near the peak, I write like a friggin' crazy person.

10k words a day, multiple days in a row....

Then I watch trashy reality t.v. shows for 4 days to recharge my mind battery because it's usually completely blown by then.

I'm also useless on any decision making for a solid 24 hours. :)

What do you want for dinner?

unnggghhh

What do you think about this?

unnggghhh

Turn left or right? Green light or red light?

ungh ungh ung....


Is there non-trashy reality shows?

Christyp
10-13-2011, 08:30 PM
Sure ritual is part of it, a routine is part of it, but I know what you mean.

When I hit my hot streaks, it's usually during a crest in my plot. Once I start building that momentum on the upswing and near the peak, I write like a friggin' crazy person.

10k words a day, multiple days in a row....

Then I watch trashy reality t.v. shows for 4 days to recharge my mind battery because it's usually completely blown by then.

I'm also useless on any decision making for a solid 24 hours. :)

What do you want for dinner?

unnggghhh

What do you think about this?

unnggghhh

Turn left or right? Green light or red light?

ungh ungh ung....


I will second the uninterrupted time and writing daily.

My writing time is frequently interrupted by my kids. When they invade my writing area I simply reply to everything they say with a monotone "I'm writing."


"The cat puked on my bed."

"I'm writing."

"Listen, I can play Eruption on this guitar."

"I'm writing."

"I'm thinking about eloping with my boyfriend."

"I'm writing."

I usually follow up with "Can you shut that door when you go?"


It takes discipline.

You're speaking my language. Nothing like writing a really great sex scene and hearing "Hey, mom?"

Manuel Royal
10-14-2011, 08:44 PM
Sadly, with me it's fear of missing a deadline or opportunity. I procrastinate, then when it's getting down to the wire I feverishly pound something out. It's ridiculous. There's excitement, and a feeling of accomplishment when I get it in there, but it's a stupid way to work.