PDA

View Full Version : Concentration Quirks And Techniques



Hapax Legomenon
07-05-2007, 03:36 AM
"I just can't sit any other way than this. If I sit the way other people do, my reasoning ability drops by forty percent."
--L, from Death Note

Some writers are simple and straight-laced in their concentration tactics; they like a clear desk, a bright room, and silence. Others need noise like the television and headphones, while others like the outdoors. There's usually an optimum situation where we can think best.

For me, I have to pace. It doesn't really matter where I am or how bright the room is, but to best write, I need to pace, and usually a lot. In fact, even as I'm typing out this response, about every other line, I'm standing up and pacing about a lap around the house.

Do you need to do anything specific to concentrate? Honestly, one of the reasons I'm asking this is because in a couple days, I'm leaving for a dorm situation for three weeks, and I don't know what I'm going to do. Dorm means less space to pace, and the harder I'm thinking, the wider circles I walk.

What do you do to help you think?

ChaosTitan
07-05-2007, 05:41 AM
I put my butt in the chair and tell myself repeatedly, "The story won't write itself."

Works every time. :D

Shady Lane
07-05-2007, 07:02 AM
I have to watch TV. Or i just get confused.

I can't write too much at once. I pause between sentences, check my facebook, drink some milk.

I do all those things you're not supposed to do.

I'm writing now.

Sean D. Schaffer
07-05-2007, 07:33 AM
I usually have to have the radio or the record player going. Also, I have to be able to get up and wander around the room when I need inspiration.

Finally, I have to sit down and basically order myself to write, or the work will never get done.

reenkam
07-05-2007, 07:40 AM
I have to watch TV. Or i just get confused.

I can't write too much at once. I pause between sentences, check my facebook, drink some milk.

I do all those things you're not supposed to do.

I'm writing now.

OH, facebook.....

that and this site take up my time. allll my time. like Shady, I'm writing right now ;)

Willowmound
07-05-2007, 03:41 PM
I pace for plotting, and sit for writing. When writing, all I need is to be alone in the room. When I get stumped, I pace again. Since I outline, this is not every day.

Sometimes I lie on the floor with my legs up against the wall. When plotting. I can't type in this position.

scarletpeaches
07-05-2007, 04:07 PM
I can't concentrate if the telly's on, and I never play music when I'm writing. I find myself singing along and sometimes the song influences the way I take the story. That's not too bad when I have some thinking time. I listen to music then and sometimes the way a song unfolds gives me ideas for future stories, but I need silence to write.

I can write with someone else in the room but only if they shut up. So it helps if they're writing too, then I know they won't disturb me.

seun
07-05-2007, 04:17 PM
I need the same place to write with music. Rocking to Therapy? gets my creative juices going every time.

Harper K
07-05-2007, 05:10 PM
I'm a pacer, too. I'm a distance runner, and I do some of my best thinking when I'm running... but when I'm home, and I'm thinking, my legs still want to move.

(Haphazard, when I lived in a dorm, I still paced my dorm room. It wasn't a big room, but if I walked from one corner to the corner diagonal to it, I could get in at least 4 or 5 paces. Of course, I only did this when my roommate was out, or when I warned her in advance that I was going to walk around the room for a minute. She was amazingly understanding about it. Heh.)

I can't write at all while watching TV, or if there's music on that has too much of a story attached to it (like Broadway soundtracks), unless I know the songs by heart and can just confine them to the background. I suppose I write with music only about 10% of the time.

Spiny Norman
07-05-2007, 05:53 PM
I can write with stuff going on in the background, but I can't have people talking to me. I can't stand it. Can people not see that I'm doing something? Talking to me when I'm trying to concentrate is like rubbing bacon fat all over your nude body and then breaking inti a rottweiler training center.

Hapax Legomenon
07-05-2007, 07:00 PM
Sometimes I lie on the floor with my legs up against the wall. When plotting. I can't type in this position.
I will have to try that. It's my guess that the whole pacing/sitting thing has to do with circulation to the brain, while sitting in any certain way keeps your blood away from those oxygen-wasters of legs. (The way the person in the quote sat would make your legs fall asleep awfully quickly.)

JAGiunta
07-05-2007, 07:04 PM
I just need a computer and absolute quiet. Any bit of noise pulls me right out of my own story. Makes it difficult to write with a 3 year old girl in the house. Thank god for Dora. :D

DamaNegra
07-05-2007, 08:16 PM
I will have to try that. It's my guess that the whole pacing/sitting thing has to do with circulation to the brain, while sitting in any certain way keeps your blood away from those oxygen-wasters of legs. (The way the person in the quote sat would make your legs fall asleep awfully quickly.)

Now that I think of it, L's position does wonders for the concentration. Sometimes I sit like that because I get bored with normal sitting position (yeah, I'm weird) and it always helps my concentration. I'll try that for writing!

reenkam
07-05-2007, 08:52 PM
Now that I think of it, L's position does wonders for the concentration. Sometimes I sit like that because I get bored with normal sitting position (yeah, I'm weird) and it always helps my concentration. I'll try that for writing!

Actually, I've noticed that sitting like him during class helps me pay attention...I should try it for writing, too

Hapax Legomenon
07-05-2007, 10:16 PM
Actually, I've noticed that sitting like him during class helps me pay attention...I should try it for writing, too

For some reason, I find that L's position is hellishly uncomfortable (I guess that's what I get for being overweight), but I tried the sitting with my legs against the wall upside-down... and it works. o_O. WHAT ARE PEOPLE DOING SITTING NORMALLY? IT'S BAD FOR YOUR BRAINS!

Soccer Mom
07-05-2007, 10:27 PM
I prefer to write amid tranquillity, but I can work during chaos. It's better if the cat sleeps on the printer, cause she slows me down when she tries to assist with the typing.

Fighting kids are my waterloo. I can't concentrate when they start wrestling and yelling in the room.

BlueTexas
07-06-2007, 03:15 AM
I need either silence or classical music - no lyrics. Silence is better. And a chair where I can sit cross-legged, indian style.

heatheringemar
07-06-2007, 05:39 AM
I have to have music or extraneous noise of some kind. And, like others in this thread, I work best in small increments. In between, I get up, wander around, check my e-mail, etc.

Then, I go back to writing.

Works for me. :D

san_remo_ave
07-06-2007, 06:10 AM
I'm a multi-tasker by nature, so I am constantly doing two things at once. Watching TV, I'm also surfing AW. Writing and I'm listening to music or sitting on a conference call. Plotting and I'm sewing, or driving or ironing.

The only thing I do solo is reading.

janetbellinger
07-06-2007, 06:15 AM
I like a quiet place without interruption. I also like to be near a window.

jmindigo
07-06-2007, 07:46 AM
I have to have noise - music, tv, radio... sometimes all at once. I can't stand noises I don't control though, like conversations in the next room - takes me right out of the mode. I also need something to eat/drink on hand or I can't think.

And for some reason I can't work unless my feet are warm, so most of the time I sit with my legs up or crossed under me. Half the time I end up look like L, complete with chocolate or other sweet. ;)

reenkam
07-06-2007, 07:50 AM
I have to have noise - music, tv, radio... sometimes all at once. I can't stand noises I don't control though, like conversations in the next room - takes me right out of the mode. I also need something to eat/drink on hand or I can't think.

And for some reason I can't work unless my feet are warm, so most of the time I sit with my legs up or crossed under me. Half the time I end up look like L, complete with chocolate or other sweet. ;)

Twizzlers are perfect for eating while writing...they can hang out of your mouth while you type and you can continue to chew and everything. Lifesavers are good, too...and starburst...lollipops (esp dumdums)...milkshakes with massive straws...

I think L is my role model....

Hapax Legomenon
07-06-2007, 08:29 AM
Twizzlers are perfect for eating while writing...they can hang out of your mouth while you type and you can continue to chew and everything. Lifesavers are good, too...and starburst...lollipops (esp dumdums)...milkshakes with massive straws...

I think L is my role model....

I feel out of place now, I'm a sour/salty/spicy person. But... sour punch straws do mostly the same. Pepper beef jerky is good for writing.

I guess I'm the opposite?

DamaNegra
07-06-2007, 08:32 AM
Actually, I've noticed that sitting like him during class helps me pay attention...I should try it for writing, too

I've also noticed that the aforementioned position is liable to get me into trouble during class. Teachers don't like me sitting 'like a monkey'.

DamaNegra
07-06-2007, 08:33 AM
And now I have a mad desire to re-read Death Note.

reenkam
07-06-2007, 08:38 AM
and I think I might have to watch the movies again tomorrow....