Friday, April 11, 2008

The Rituals of a Writer

Have you ever taken time to consider how you prepare to write? I find that I go through the same rituals every time that I set down to write.
First, I check my e-mail. After all, there may be some work sent to me from a client that needs my immediate attention, or important messages from family members or friends that I can't ignore. Then, I must check the Southern Magic loops, the Critique Group loop and the latest blog. I don't want to let anyone down. It dawns on me that I should also check the Yahoo's home page so I am current on what is happening in the world. A writer must be informed. So I check it too.
Finally it is time to write. That is when I notice that my husband has re-arranged everything on my desk. Annoyed, but trying not to be anal about it, I fix everything the way I like it. Now, I am really ready to begin.
By now, my middle aged bladder dictates that I make a quick trip to the bathroom. This is followed by a stop in the kitchen to get something to drink. Okay, I am set. Let the creative juices flow! Usually they do and I manage to write a few pages each day. This is the best part of the day for me and it is my reward for doing everything else I do all day long. But, lately I have been wondering how much more I could write if I wasn't chained to my pre-writing rituals? The novel I have been plodding through would probably already be done.

What rituals do you go through before you begin writing?


Carla Swafford said...

I've heard other authors talk about this. They have a routine that helps her mind to realize it's time to write.

But I don't. I sometimes check email first and my favorite agents' blogs. Sometimes I go straight into writing on opening my laptop. Sometimes I'm in the living room, others I'm in the dinning room, or then again I'm in the bedroom.

Sometimes I listen to music, or type during commercials while watching my favorite shows or I have complete silence (as you can with a husband that watches TV ALL THE TIME.

My favorite time to type is during the stock car races. I can keep up with the placements of my favorite drivers but still a lot typed.

JoAnn said...

I'm afraid I don't have a ritual, and I probably should. I find myself very mercurial when it comes to writing. On the weekends, I'll usually marathon-write. During the week, it's more like an hour here, two hours there, fifteen minutes the other place. Grab my laptop and go to it.

And my work probably shows it too! :-)

Christy Reece said...

I definitely have a ritual. Won't give you details because it's boring, but if I get sidetracked at all, it takes me hours to get back on track. I need my routine!