In the Mood

In the Mood
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No, I’m not discussing the song, “In the Mood for Love”. What I want to explore is what gets us in the mood to write. This can be a vast subject seeing that depending who you are and what you like can vary beyond a person’s imagination. I thought it would be good to start with the basics though.

Maybe the best way to handle this topic is for me to tell you what works for me and, hopefully, you will tell me your strategies in the comment section.

Random or Special Places

I guess I need the special place. The smallest bedroom in my house is converted into “the computer room”. Although I’d like to write in other rooms like the kitchen or living room, when I do that, I feel my surroundings are strange and distracting.

I bought a laptop just for that purpose, switching rooms once in a while. So far, the only other room that doesn’t disconcert me is the back bedroom. Maybe it’s because it’s cooler in there, which must be good for the laptop. Right?

Noisy or Quiet Surrounding

Kristi faithfully visits a coffee shop in Texas to do her writing. She takes her laptop and tries to snatch the same table every time. Somehow all the commotion with people talking works as white noise for her.

I know other writers who have music going while they write. They tell me they need it to set the mood or for the rhythm of their writing. I understand what they’re saying, but it won’t work for me.

I wouldn’t get any writing done if I tries to pound on the keys in a public place or with music blasting. Even a library gets me feeling a little daunted when it comes to writing, yet it sure is quiet there. The library intimidation could be that I’ve not spent a lot of time in one since the turn of the century. I use the resources on the internet now. Maybe I just need to reintroduce myself to the building.

Until that time comes, I need utter silence in my environment while I try to weave a tale. This can be troublesome at times. My husband loves noise. This wouldn’t be such a grave issue except “the computer room” doesn’t have a door. I’m not sure that would do much good anyway though because one of my cats, Marble, would continuously scratch at the door until it was opened. Whenever my husband goes someplace without me and I know he’ll be gone for more that a half hour, I try to use as much of that time for writing.

What Items are in Reach?

Jacqui has two monitors for her computer. She also has a personal library of books she uses when she writes. Her desk is so clean and tidy. Judging from the pictures I’ve seen, she’s well organized.

My collection of items to use while writing is minuscule compared to Jacqui’s arrangement. I have a traveling mug that will hold three regular mugs of coffee. There’s no way that sucker is tipping over either because it’s got a weight in the bottom of it. I have yet to have liquid all over the keyboard. I have a small bin to the right of the monitor that stores my books about writing. The plastic tray that sits in front of the bin holds Advil, post-note pads, a dinky spiral, and a flashlight. I keep my pens in a McDonald’s Happy Meal glass.

Weather

The weather, for the most part doesn’t seem to affect my desire to write one way or the other. I’ve known writers that have a hard time during the glorious days of summer or can’t seem to find that groove in the winter. Sometimes, but not often, the wind will play havoc with my ability to write. I wish it would have the opposite effect on me.

Without these things, I have a hard time getting in the mood to write. Sometimes I wonder why I even bothered getting the laptop when I rarely use it. Yes, I know, I should get more adventurous.

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Now, even with all this said, I know some writers wait until they’re in the mood to write. I have a hard time understanding this logic. You could be waiting for years for that mood to hit you just right. Some of the best writing I’ve done has been when I’ve had to insist that I get my butt in the seat and just start hammering in the keys.

§

What gets you in the mood to write?

“There are times when I think that the ideal library is composed solely of reference books. They are like understanding friends—always ready to meet your mood, always ready to change the subject when you have had enough of this or that.” ― J. Donald Adams

 

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8 Replies to “In the Mood”

  1. My writing inspiration has less to do with my surroundings than my brain. Sometimes, everything clicks; other times, not so much. I love those times when it all makes sense. I set up a note-taking account on Google Keep so when inspiration strikes, I can quickly enter Keep and start jotting. I also figured out how to annotate the books I read. By the time I finish the book, the review is pretty much complicated, filled with inspiration and authentic thoughts.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I always enjoy reading how other writers work and what inspires their stories, so this article is candy for me, Glynis. Yum! What works for you is what you should do – as you know.

    I’m forced to write in a very public area of our house and I love either classical music or classic rock in the background. It helps to thrum out the other noises around me, kinda like a fountain if I could set one up in the living room. (Wait till Bob hears about the fountain idea!) I’m planning to convert a bedroom to an art and writing studio for me – one day. Fountain outside the window.

    The only thing that stops me from writing are every day obligations. Right now I’m still recovering from the injury to my arm, still doing a lot of physical therapy, and the hours left over demand other tasks to be fulfilled. OK, too much whining about my life and why I don’t write as much as I should. Wait – there’s cracker left out on the table and I should eat it and then there’s an email to read and – and – and. Too many excuses in my corner of the ring.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I need relative quiet to write, so it’s been a bummer that I got a new neighbor a while back with two little dogs that like to bark all the time. I’ve asked her once to keep them in more, and it worked for a few months, but now the tiny terrors are out more often again even though it’s getting cold out.

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  4. It doesn’t take much for me to get in the mood to write. I can work pretty much anywhere. I prefer a bookstore rather than a coffee shop or my home. There’s a Barnes and Noble I go to often to write. It has a second floor where I sit and write away. I usually sit near a window because I like seeing the crowds below. Surprisingly, this isn’t a distraction. Noise doesn’t bother me either. I can usually tune out the chatter. Most times, I’ll pack my earbuds and stream music on Spotify.

    I could write in my house, too, but it’s a little harder. The only place I can write is in my kitchen, and it’s junky all the time. And most times, I have to write early in the morning or when everyone’s asleep.

    I will set time aside to write, whether I’m in the mood or not. I feel it’s important to me to get thoughts out on paper, or I’ll forget and it wrecks my writing mood. When I journal, I try to write what comes to me and not stop until I reach my time limit. There are times where I felt like all I spat out is dribble. But I feel good afterwards putting those feelings to paper.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I should do more journaling. I have a tendency to keep my feelings in, which I’ve been told numerous times isn’t good for me. Most of my writing is in the morning with the house quiet and me sitting in my swivel at my PC. Sometimes it feels claustrophobic but other times I just feel cozy.

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  5. I often think I’m too fussy about where I write, so am glad to share notes on this subject – in addition, I find writing longhand to be a wonderful creativity tool – my writing style is much enhanced by it

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