A bit on how I write, part 1

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Taken from a questionnaire on How You Write.

  • Do you write in longhand or at a computer?

I usually write using my laptop. It’s where I keep the bulk of my writing files, but I do still have some of them on my desktop. I got the laptop so I could take it with me if things ever get too noisy in my building or if I feel like going to the library and working there.

I also have a bunch of notebooks I write in. The Brumal Star‘s outline and world building was done in a series of notebooks. Sometimes I like the feeling of writing in longhand with different colored Sharpies. I also like the smell of Sharpies, which is a topic for a totally different post.

  • Do you create a detailed outline, or just start writing?

I’ve tried outlining in a few different  ways. I’ve done the traditional setup, like this:

I. main idea

a. blah blah

  1. more blah blah
  2. even more blah blah

And I’ve tried doing it the “Twelve Sentences” method, which I had varying degrees of success with.

What work best for me is to write a humongous idea dump at the beginning of my document and break it into section within chapter headings.

I tend to edit as I go along, which “they” tell you not to do, but it works for me.

 

 

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Surrounded By Cats: Where I Write

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Evan not actually sleeping on top of any computers or books.

Until fairly recently, my writing corner was my computer desk. It’s littered with stacks of notebooks and mugs filled with pens, Sharpies, and highlighters for when I feel like doing things the old school way.

But then I splurged on a small laptop and transferred some of my writing files onto it so I can grab it and take it anywhere.

While using the laptop makes working more convenient for me, it also makes it easier for my cat Evan the Destroyer, head of the local chapter of Cats Against Literacy (CAL) and its sub-chapter, Cats Against Writing (CAW) to make herself at home on top of it.

At least Elder cat, Rory Cupcakes, is content to hang out on the bed or the papasan chair most of the time.

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Where do you work on writing? Are you surrounded by cats?

 

A Gnat on Speed: Writing While Distracted

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I have the attention span of a gnat on speed.

My writing process is very distracted and disorganized.

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gif of how my brain operates

Typically, I have a bunch of tabs open in my browser.

It’s the usual suspects: Facebook, Twitter, Netflix, random astrology site, IMDb, Pinterest, dictionary.com…

I tend to have at least three writing projects going on at once, not including my blogs. If I closed my browser and focused on one thing at a time, my productivity would probably go up 577%.

The  strategy that usually works for me is to set the timer on my phone and write until it buzzes. I don’t engage in social media or anything during the timed blocks of writing.

I’m aware of apps that block your Internet access so you can work undisturbed but I haven’t tried any of those yet.

Do you write while distracted? How do you overcome it?