Words written: 200 Every single letter ripped screaming and kicking from my bleeding fingertips.
Why. Won’t. Words. Come? ARGH!
I think it’s time to invoke the caffeine gods to slap around my muse.
In better news, the editor of The Quiet Ward sent an email out to all the accepted contributors. The anthology is still on track for debuting at Horrorfind Weekend in August. He asked for a bio, and said the publisher will be sending out contracts right soon. Rah!
I was curious (and totally unable to produce word countage) so I did a little tally to see what my breakdown was in sales by genre category. It’s split right down the middle, err tri-section. One third of my sales are Science Fiction, one third Fantasy, and one third Horror, with a dangling Erotic Horror story to keep things interesting.
I know you don’t know me from Adam (I found you via Cherie), but I’m not a big believer in 1) writers block and 2) forcing words out like large 15 lb babies.
This does not mean that I don’t think you have it and certainly doesn’t mean I don’t empathize, ‘cos I do.
Boy do I.
I’ve always found that ‘writers block’ is usually due to lack of information. Your subconscious doesn’t have enough to work with for whatever reason. I have some tips and tricks that I use on a daily basis and I haven’t been blocked yet. They’re a little ‘new age’ or artsy-fartsy but hey – they work for me :>
Holler here or via email if you’d like me to elaborate.
Might help. Might think it’s a bunch a hooey :>
Pleased to metcha. I noticed you’d added me on as a friend and saw we shared
as friends and that you were a writer too. I always like networking with other writers.
I’d love to hear your anti-blocking tips and tricks, new-age-artsy-fartsy notwithstanding!
Okay, you asked for it! :>
I’m speaking specifically as a novelist, so you can substitute the word ‘chapter’ with ‘story’ I’m thinking.
Before I turn out the light and go to bed, I pray/affirm/talk to my subconscious mind, because I truly believe that your brain is the best computer in the world and the most powerful. It HAS to do whatever you tell it to do.
It goes something like this “Tonight, while I’m asleep, I want you to work on Chapter 24, the one where Denton and Monty go to .. blah blah blah. I’m going to sit down tomorrow afternoon at 5pm and write this chapter. I know you will have everything worked out in advance and the words will flow freely and the chapter will come out pefectly. I give thanks for the work that you have done and you will do tonight, and truly appreciate it.”
Then I go to sleep. The next morning, I sit down and write down the basics of the chapter I’m gong to work on that night. The first line, the last line (these two are VITAL to know before putting pen to paper, I believe) and any snips of dialogue or description that flit into my head. I keep this pad at my desk all day, and when something bubbles up to the surface I scribble it down, and keep on working at my day job.
That night, at 5pm, I open up my file, close my eyes, say a brief prayer of thanks, look at my notes to see what my first line is supposed to be, and rock on.
I do a chapter a day like this, and I’ve averaged a book a year, over 400 pages a book, and 4 drafts of each manuscript.
Use that supercomputer! :>
Hmm. Well, I’m willing to try anything once. Well, no, not anything, but the writerly meditation before bedtime sounds like a decent idea. I’m a big fan of yoga and a firm believer in the properties of meditation . . . despite the fact that I’ve been too lazy/unmotivated to do much of either recently. So I’ll give it a whirl. Thanks for the advice!
No worries. Take what works for YOU and leave the rest behind.
My blocks usually come when I come up with a cool story idea, but am stymied as to what the actual scenes of the story should be. I was prodding a piece like that last night and going nowhere, and finally today at work, I figured out exactly what the story had to be about and what the progression of scenes were, and I’m raring to get home and get writing.
It also helps if I can get inside the head of the POV character. That’s something I need to noodle around a little more with on this piece, but it’s easier for me to do that at home than at work.
This story I have totally outlined, which is what’s driving me nuts. I know what’s going to happen, I just can’t seem to force the scenes into words on the page. Argh!
Actually, I think I get blocked more when I outline. Knowing what’s going to happen seems to kill my urge to write it. Then again, there have been times when I’ve had an outline and hit flow, cranking out thousands of words out in a single sitting.
I dunno. My writing process remains an utter mystery to me.
Well, there’s always the “belt of scotch” writing technique.
Step 1: Pour some scotch
Step 2: Drink scotch
Step 3: Sit ass in front of computer and wait for inhibitions to start vanishing.
Tequila may be substituted for scotch. Basically, you need something strong enough to hit you quickly, but that won’t incapacitate you.
This technique is recommended only for rough drafts. Do not booze up for revisions.
Substitute “scotch” with “coffee” (or Penguin Mints, Diet Pepsi, Amp, or other caffeine-containing substance) and I’m there. Caffeine often jump-starts my muse, but I’ve built up a really huge tolerance for it. I’ve been trying to cut back, with limited (zero) success.
I only do recreational caffeine. That’s the way to do it if you want it to give you a kick.
200 words is 200 more than you had. Don’t be so hard on yourself. Just strive to make today (tomorrow) a better writing day. Shoot for 201. 😉
Very true. 200 better than 0!