The Writing Rituals tag

I’m stealing this one from youtube. I wasn’t really tagged by anyone, but I originally saw it in this video:

  1. When do you write (time of day/day of week)?
    I write 6-7 days a week. If I happen to have down time at work, I might squeeze in 500 words or so, otherwise I’ll write before dinner when I get home, and then usually after dinner.
  2. How do you seclude yourself from the outside world?
    I’m an a-social hermit, so this isn’t hard. I usually just sit in my room. When my anxiety is bad, I’ll put on my headphones–sometimes with instrumental music, sometimes with no music at all, just to block out any ambient noise.I don’t always like seclusion, though. Sometimes I enjoy writing in cafes, just to be around other people, even if I’m not interacting with them. And I usually have Twitter open in the background, doing writing sprints or talking to other writers.
  3. How do you review what you wrote the previous day?

    hermes book 2
    Editor kitty is hard at work.

    I don’t. I’ll read the last paragraph or two, just to refresh my memory and get things started, but I don’t edit until the draft is done, unless I have an epiphany and decide to make a major change. Even then, I’ll usually find the relevant sections in the document and mark them with a comment to be changed later. Once the 1st draft is done, I’ll create a new document, copy in the original text, save it as draft 2, and make the changes.Or at least, that’s what I did when I was using Word as my primary writing software. Now that I’m back to using Scrivener regularly, I’m not sure how I want to manage revisions. I’m only just learning about the different drafting tools Scrivener has to offer.

  4. What song is your go-to when you’re feeling uninspired?
    It depends on the book. I usually have an album I associate with a particular WIP. For The Spider’s Web, it was Papa Roach’s The Paramour Sessions. For The Ferrymen, it was Meteora, by Linkin Park. When I was writing the book I’m currently querying, I listened to Songs of the Civil War on repeat for about two and a half months. I knew the lyrics to every single song on that album by heart, and I couldn’t get “When Johnny Comes Marching Home” out of my head for weeks after that. For my current WIP (and anything set in the 1920s) it’s the soundtrack for the silent film Metropolis. So far my Nanowrimo novel hasn’t picked a soundtrack yet, but I suspect I’ll spend a lot of time searching Youtube for steampunk music compilations and Lindsay Sterling playlists.
  5. What do you always do (read, watch tv, etc) when you’re struggling with writer’s block?
    I go for a walk while listening to music, then come back and watch something with the same atmosphere as the book I’m working on.If that doesn’t work, I switch formats. Usually if I start writing stream of consciousness thoughts about the character or scene, either by hand or on the typewriter, something rattles loose and then it starts flowing again.
  6. What tools do you use to write?
    I love using a typewriter, but haven’t been able to for a while because of the noise.

    Typically, I use Scrivener or word. Most of my notes and outlines I keep as a hard copy, because I retain information (like research) better when I hand write it.

  7. What’s the one thing you can’t live without during a writing session?
    Either my laptop or a notebook. I will write anywhere, however. As long as I have a way to record the words, I’ll do it.
  8. How do you fuel yourself during your writing session?
    I’m horrible about snacking when I write. Lately I’ve been really into mixing cashews and M&Ms, or eating Triscuts when I write. In the summer, I like having a smoothie, milkshake, or an enormous glass of ice water or juice, and in the winter I do tea or my version of a cafe mocha (1 packet mint hot chocolate, 1/2 tsp instant coffee, 1.5 cups milk, microwaved for 2.5-3 minutes).
  9. How do you know when you’re done writing?
    During the “off season” my goal is between 1,000-1,500 words per day, depending on the book, the state of my mental health, and what other real-life commitments I have going at that time (usually in the summer and in December I write about 1,000 words a day, and the rest of the year it’s about 1500. I allow myself one day off a week, but it’s almost never the same day since it varies depending (again) on my mental health and what my schedule is.

    Even when it’s not Nanowrimo, I write every day and track where I am in the story. When I have to use Word, I use a chart like this in Excel to track my progress. Otherwise, I’m in Scrivener. This is a chart I used for a big editing project over the summer.

There you have it! I hope you enjoyed this, it was fun answering all those questions! If you want to answer them for yourself, leave a comment with a link to your post–I’d love to read your answers!

Along this same vein, you may have noticed a new tab at the top of the page. I’m testing out a new service–if you are a writer, I am offering free critiques of query letters, first pages, and synopsises. So pop on over and have a look.

Like what you see? Check out A-Z Book Tag.