This week the Deb task is to discuss the Where/Why/What we use when we write, but I’d argue for another one, the Me – but more on that later.
Most of the time, I work in my office. It’s the smallest room in the house, other than the bathroom under the stairs with only a toilet and sink, but it does contain the most books. It has 7 book cases, all of which are overflowing. My to-read pile is stacked ramshackle all over the floor, making a path to my desk, which is really just an old oak table, and a comfy chair. At some point, I dream of swapping out the comfy chair for a treadmill desk, but I haven’t worked out the funds yet.
Keeping me company is a random selection of toons, my buddy Groot, and my SuperMutt Daisy, who looks like Sprocket from Fraggle Rock. I always keep a notebook where I do brainstorming, scribble ideas, and take research notes. I found that writing each scene summary on a notecard helps me plan out the story beats and it looks cool when each card is pinned onto my planning board.
Software speaking, I use Scrivener to draft and do most of my edits. Scrivener makes it so easy to rearrange those scenes I mentioned above when the story isn’t flowing the way I want it to. I don’t switch to Word until the line edits. Word is my nemesis. I’m also easily distracted, so I’ve learned that to stay focused, I need to either put Scrivener in full screen or to turn off my internet completely using Freedom (seriously love this App).
I’m not a “write every day” person. When I’m drafting, that’s what I do, but otherwise, I’m working on other projects, like this blog or Pitch Wars. Of course, all of the above “norms” gets thrown out the window if I sense I need a change. If my words are not good, or the family is too noisy, or I just have cabin fever, then I’ll switch it all up. I’ll go to a coffee shop, or the local library. Sometimes just moving to a different room in the house will shake loose the ideas.
Now that I have a book moving into production, I do sense my work style is going to need to change. I need to start revising my WIP (which is currently a hot, steaming mess), but I also have other obligations like this blog, getting C3 (The Coincidence of Coconut Cake) ready for the world, and keeping my family fed and clothed on a regular basis. I’m thinking of different ways I can organize my day, such as mornings for my WIP, afternoons for C3 related work, and evenings for family, saving the time after my kiddos go to sleep all for me.
And that, dear readers, is an equally important component to my Where/What/Why. It’s easy to get caught up in the writing spaces, deadlines, and word counts, but remember that all that falls apart if you don’t take care of yourself. Get sleep, eat healthy foods (at least on occasion – one cannot live on chocolate alone), and remember to read a book or watch a favorite show. Me Time is important, too!