The Insecure Writer’s Support Group meets (online) on the first Wednesday of every month. During these especially scary days, it’s nice to know you’ve got a group like this at your back. If you haven’t already, come join!
The awesome co-hosts for the April 1 posting of the IWSG are Diane Burton, JH Moncrieff, Anna @ Emaginette, Karen @ Reprobate Typewriter (Hi!), Erika Beebe, and Lisa Buie-Collard!
April 1 question: Do you have any rituals that you use when you need help getting into the ZONE? Care to share?
Why, yes, there is indeed a no-fail ritual I turn to and I would be delighted to share.
- First, what you need is a good knife sharpener. Chef quality, if you can. You’re going to want a really good edge. Next you’ll need a good narrow filleting knife. None of those big ol watermelon chopper kinds, finesse is needed here.
- During the next gibbous moon (waxing gibbous, definitely) head for any swampy, rich, muddy area close to you. Getting out of there with dry boots is a bad sign, I mean the kind of place that actively tries to suck your shoes off and eat them.
- Bring a good reusable shopping bag, two green bell peppers (pasilla will work as a substitute), two spiders (doesn’t matter what kind), an empty container, lots of string, and a snack, cause this will take most of the night and self-care is important. (I suggest tacos.) The container is for blood. Blood will flow as streams for this ritual. When you find a good area to set up your trap you’ll need to leash the spiders and tie them to . . . oh.
Oh . . . wait. That’s not—haha, no, wait, that’s incorrect.
That’s the wrong ritual. Wrong one. Sorry, friends.
Ahem. In actual seriousness, I have no ritual to get me in the Writing Zone. I just . . . do not have one. Nor have I found one that works every time, because discipline and consistency are kinda anti-SE traits, and this is something I know to be true about myself after 33 years on this planet. I am a vague, oblivious, socially anxious, kind of ditzy, unorganized person with a bad short-term memory. I have developed life-hacks and habits to work with and/or minimize (cause this kind of personality doesn’t get the bills paid, yo), but I don’t have one magic bullet fix for my writing life.
The closest I get to a ritual, and if you want to steal this idea please do, is this: I always go back a chapter or two and re-read what was happening before I start writing.
*shocked gasps all around* I know, I know, this goes against current writing advice which is all VOMIT WRITE DIRTY ON THE FIRST DRAFT and NEVER SELF EDIT YOU INSECURE MUFFIN and YOU CAN’T EDIT A BLANK PAGE. Yes. Totally. I agree 100% if this kind of get-it-down-on-the-page works for you. But it does not work for me and my Dory-memory self.
I need to hit the refresh button before I can go forward, and that’s how I write. As I read through what I already finished I slip back into the world I was creating, remember where I was trying to go, and recollect what steps were next to get me across this constantly rushing torrent of ideas. It’s like shifting from park into drive for me, and it’s something I need.
Will it work for you? Maybe. Also perhaps not. We all hack out the words from the Idea Mines with a different pick. But I will enjoy visiting your blogs today and hearing what works for you. Happy IWSG Day, writers. Stay safe and healthy.
I guess my ritual is to simply put off writing for a bit and then wait until I feel so guilty I dash downstairs to my computer and start writing. Nothing pushes me to write like the guilt of not having written for a while.
If it’s what works then I’m all for it! Good luck with the new book 🙂
That made me chuckle!
And I have no rituals either.
Oh good! Humor is definitely my coping mechanism of choice and we can all use a little, right now.
I that too and it helps me get back into it. 🙂
Anna from elements of emaginette
Good! I was so sure everyone would comment and say “eww, no, why would you do that, SE?” so it’s been a huge relief to have so much backup in this!
Your writing process sounds a lot like mine! May you and yours stay safe and well.
Oh, that’s reassuring to hear. And thank you!
I do the same! I always have to go back and re-read what I was writing in order to get started for the day. Not that I’m doing much of that lately…*hangs head in shame*…Because, well….*mumbles frail excuses for not writing*…Yeah. Hope you’re keeping safe and healthy over there!
We are, thank you! I hope you & your family are all staying healthy as well.
I’m gradually developing a habit of typing the previous day’s work before I get started on the story again the next day. It would probably be really good for me, if I actually typed on a regular basis. **sigh**
Happy IWSG Day
No matter what I’m holding fast to the notion that it’s helpful, haha. Thanks for stopping by today!