I wasn’t specifically tagged for this, but writerly stuff is pressing on my mind what with NaNo coming in less than a month (EXCUSE ME? HOW DID THIS HAPPEN??), and Cait did say to consider yourself tagged if you’re a writer, and she stole this herself, so… Yes. I’m just going to do this tag because I want to. 😉 So I’m stealing it from Cait @ Paper Fury and using it for my own purposes. *devious laughter*
I’m NaNo-theming this #WritersLife tag because NaNo is coming sooner than any of us are going to be ready for it.
WHAT DO YOU EAT/DRINK WHILE WRITING?
I actually don’t usually, because food is messy around laptops (ask my character Baz about the properties of Devious Mustard…) and I’m not really a snacker… I will sometimes drink hot tea or something during NaNo while I’m writing because, let’s face it, November can be cold sometimes, and if I’m going to be writing for like three hours in a day, I might want to drink something warm.
WHAT DO YOU LISTEN TO WHILE WRITING?
Generally instrumental music like soundtracks or Celtic music I have around… During NaNo it either has to be inspirational (i.e. sound gorgeous or epic) or it has to be REALLY fast for ideal typing speeds. I’ll listen to stuff with lyrics if I really like it and if it won’t distract me. I haven’t yet decided what my music of choice is going to be this NaNo, but last year when I was word-warring myself against a timer, I listened basically non-stop to this song which is stupendous for fast typing.
WHAT’S YOUR MOST DEBILITATING DISTRACTION?
During NaNo, every. single. thing. that I can come up with. I’m a horrible procrastinator. But probably the internet. I know, that’s sooo surprising. But it only takes a minute to check email, the NaNo forums, Goodreads, etc., right? …Right? *hours later* “Oops, I should have been writing, now it’s bedtime.” #fail This year I’m going to have to set some serious rules about internet (even though I have super-good excuses like being an ML who should be keeping track of stuff. But I must write too!).
WHAT’S THE WORST THING THAT’S EVER HAPPENED TO YOU WHILE WRITING?
When I lose some writing because I was stupid and didn’t back it up. Fortunately, that hasn’t happened TOO often… During NaNo, it’s being behind and feeling completely and utterly stuck, writers-blocked, and despairing. That’s generic, though. The worst thing that HAS happened is probably my first year of NaNo, when the final day dawned and I still had 8k left to write, absolutely no plot figured out, and no inspiration. (I overcame it though! Nearly five years later, I’m still amazed I managed to write 8k of utterly pantsed NaNo novel that day.)
WHAT’S THE BEST THING THAT’S EVER HAPPENED WHILE WRITING OR HOW DO YOU CELEBRATE SMALL VICTORIES?
The best thing is when you finish something. That never, ever gets old. But, during NaNo, it’s easily hitting the wordcount goal for the day and being super inspired/on a roll and ahead of schedule. Fabulous feelings! I don’t celebrate much, usually, other than being excited and maybe shouting it through the house or posting somewhere online to squeal about accomplishments. For big things, I might reward myself with some chocolate or reading a Diana Wynne Jones book or playing on Pinterest.
WHO DO YOU COMMUNICATE WITH OR NOT COMMUNICATE WITH WHILE WRITING?
My sister gets the main load of writing complaints and excitements. My lovely braintwin/writing buddy Christine, too, gets a lot of that. And during NaNo, there’s a wealth of forum places on the NaNo site to celebrate and commiserate, especially with people in your age-range, or genre, or region. So some of that goes on.
WHAT’S YOUR WRITING SECRET TO SUCCESS OR HIDDEN FLAW?
Secret to success during NaNo is setting a timer and word-warring against it to really fast music. It works. I only survived last NaNo (on a road trip) because of that. Because, wonder of wonders, if you actually start writing and write for 5 or 10 or 15 minutes, at the end of that, you WILL have words. And that’s going to add up. Who knew, right?
Hidden flaw? I’m a procrastinator, a perfectionist, and I don’t actually sit down and START writing during NaNo. …Not that those are all that hidden. *cough*
WHAT ALWAYS MAKES YOU PRODUCTIVE?
I want to repeat the above writing secret. NaNo wordwars, either with yourself or someone else, are super productive-inducing.
WHAT’S ONE THING WRITERS DO (OR YOU DO) THAT’S ANNOYING?
It’s really annoying when I don’t write. Like, when I say I’m going to write and I don’t. Or anytime during NaNo when I SHOULD be writing and am not…
SHARE ONE SENTENCE FROM A PROJECT, PAST OR PRESENT.
Well, since I haven’t started my NaNo yet (obviously) I can’t NaNo-theme this answer…
A line from The Rose and the Raven, my current Sleeping Beauty retelling project:
Whatever it was, it wrapped around his heart—the feeling of an almost insubstantial web . . . the shadow of a black cloak, a whisper’s echo, a ripple in a midnight pool; an invisible spiderweb, greyed with ashes, clinging to him somewhere that he could not shake off.