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Old 06-06-2006, 12:46 AM   #1
halw
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Question for all Writers-Where and What?

So this question doesn't neccesarily apply only to aspiring or published comic book writers but anyone who writes.

So I've had this idea for a few months that over the past few weeks has started to come out in notes, dialogue and scene layout up until about two weeks ago.

I'm not sure if's from exhaustion from work or just due to not feeling good on and off from the allergies this season(fun times) but I haven't been able to write much lately.

So I ask everyone the following:

1.Where do you write? The environment. Do you listen to music, watch TV, or is it in a quiet place?

2.What inspires you or motivates your brain to work

3.Any suggestions on my conundrum?
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Old 06-06-2006, 12:55 AM   #2
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1. I write wherever I can. I jot notes on paper, but I do all my serious planning on the computer, so until I got this laptop last month, I was limited to writing in my room. But when I did, I would shut the door and turn on music or surf the web ... just relax my mind. People often confuse that with goofing off, and it's easy to get lost in that, so just be careful you don't begin to procrastinate.

2. I'm inspired by a fun idea that I want to develop. If I have an idea or concept that I think could be a lot of fun, I run with it until it either gets done or fizzles and dies somewhere down the road and is ultimately replaced by another.

3. Write anything. Just write. Keep your fingers moving on the keyboard and let the words come out. Write a journal. Write a letter. Transcribe your favorite song. Anything. And when you're in the writing groove, do that with your story. Write anything about your story. Don't worry how crappy it is. Write it. It's for your eyes only. Keep the fingers moving. Then go back and edit it later. Eventually you'll have something close to a solid foundation from which to stand on.

4. (freebie) Writing is not a machine that comes with an on/off switch. It's hard work, and it's frustrating when you can't get in the mood, or the ideas just aren't coming. You're at the mercy of that secret thing inside all of us. If anyone knew 100% how to break that thing down, they'd be millionaires. The truth is, it's a waiting game, and everyone is different.

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Old 06-06-2006, 12:56 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by halw
So this question doesn't neccesarily apply only to aspiring or published comic book writers but anyone who writes.

So I've had this idea for a few months that over the past few weeks has started to come out in notes, dialogue and scene layout up until about two weeks ago.

I'm not sure if's from exhaustion from work or just due to not feeling good on and off from the allergies this season(fun times) but I haven't been able to write much lately.

So I ask everyone the following:

1.Where do you write? The environment. Do you listen to music, watch TV, or is it in a quiet place?
Utter chaos works for me...but I don't think that's normal. Quiet kills me. Usually something on TV (preferably sports since there will be no sound). For music, something loud and energetic when I am trying to think. Something mellow when I am actually writing. (Lots of Dire Straits for some reason. )

Quote:
2.What inspires you or motivates your brain to work
Anger and frustration. The news. Any piece of nonsense that strikes me...hard to say, but the anger and frustration are pretty standard.

Quote:
3.Any suggestions on my conundrum?
You've hit the boring part of writing. Get over it and man up and force something out onto the page. Outline the damn thing. You probably know your beginning and end...figure out how to connect them. Make sure you know your characters. If you do, you'll figure out the how. If you don't you're not ready to write the story yet. Let it bang around in your head for a while.
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Old 06-06-2006, 07:56 AM   #4
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To avoid distractions, I write with as little unneccessary noise as possible. And I usually sit in my bedroom or in front of my computer. On occassion I jot down notes for stories at work or try to work a story out in my head at work because I work 12 hours a work day.

Most of my writing just sort of hits me as far as inspiration goes. Otherwise, I usually decide to try and work a set of circumstances into a story. Sort of like: I want to write about my character finding himself in jeopardy of drowning in a flooding river and my character has several wounds - maybe a broken leg. And then I try to make plausible reasons for why he's in that position and the outcome.

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Old 06-06-2006, 10:06 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by halw
1.Where do you write? The environment. Do you listen to music, watch TV, or is it in a quiet place?

2.What inspires you or motivates your brain to work

3.Any suggestions on my conundrum?
1. I have a notepad with me everywhere I go to jot down those gems that will disappear if I don't. My co-workers laugh when they see me feverishly writing notes in a lab meeting, because they know it's fodder for Lab Bratz.

But the hard part - actually writing the stuff in script format - is done at the computer in our home office. No music, no TV, no surfing the internet, because I am a HORRIBLE procrastinator (actually I'm great at procrastinating...). I tend to write mostly at night, after the kids are asleep. If I have a deadline, I've been known to take a sick day from work and pound a story out.

2. The old Inspiration/Perspiration conundrum...
Everything inspires me to write, but I don't often follow through. If you are always waiting for the muse to smack you upside the brainpan, you're a dreamer, not a writer. If you start writing before you are inspired, the beginning stuff will be crap, but the juices will start flowing and the material will get better. You can always rewrite or throw away the early junk. Just don't get discouraged by the poor quality...it'll get better as the day goes on.

By the way, I ignore that very advice far too often because I was a dreamer WAY before I was a writer. Old habits die lingering deaths, and when you think you've defeated them, they poke up through the mental humus like zombies, intent on eating your brains.

3. Plant your butt on the seat, bub, and start writing.
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Old 06-06-2006, 10:12 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by halw
1.Where do you write? The environment. Do you listen to music, watch TV, or is it in a quiet place?
Anywhere and everywhere. Louder the better for me usually (lots of background noise helps me focus).

Quote:
2.What inspires you or motivates your brain to work
Me (and a love of storytelling).

Quote:
3.Any suggestions on my conundrum?
Either work on something else while that idea simmers, or if you have characters developed, run them through some fun situations (put them in scenes from your favorite comic/movie/novel to see what would happen and help bring them to life).
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Old 06-06-2006, 10:30 AM   #7
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I read that Stephen King has a little nook in a hallway where he writes, suprisingly humble and unspectacular. I think he also uses a brother word processor or something similarly outdated. I found that interesting.

1. I either write very early in the morning or very late at night, usually on my studio computer or on the living room couch with a laptop. I need silence, although occasionally I'll listen to classical music or movie soundtracks if it's turned down low enough. I never watch t.v. as a general rule when I'm writing or drawing. I write down ideas in my sketchbooks. I keep one in the car, one in the studio and one in the living room. I'll email myself notes and ideas also, if I'm away from home, most of that ends up in a computer file where it will simmer until I finally decide to start writing an actual script.

2. I'm not sure what 'motivates my brain to work' when I'm writing. If the story idea is interesting enough to me, I'll write it down until I eventually have a script.

3. You can't force inspiration, but at the same time you can't wait for inspiration to strike. Force yourself into a routine and determine a quota that you want to reach every day, whether that's 5 pages or 5 sentences. Write about anything, write about nothing. Eventually the ideas should come, and if you're lucky, inspiration.
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Old 06-06-2006, 10:36 AM   #8
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I found myself abandoning the standard writing process and sort of drawing out my stories with notes, etc.

Definitly write or brainstorm wherever you are most comfortable.
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Old 06-06-2006, 10:49 AM   #9
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1.Where do you write? The environment. Do you listen to music, watch TV, or is it in a quiet place?
I start by jotting down notes on scrap pieces of paper or legal pads. IF I am working on a larger project I then transfer those notes to three ring binders. When actually working on the project I use my laptop, can be anywhere in our house but usually it is in our living room or in my office downstairs. Gotta love the wireless.
I need background noise. Usually it is my iPod, but it also can be TV which usually is on the history channel, something like that or a movie.

2.What inspires you or motivates your brain to work
Anything can inspire me. Good or bad. World events, reading a good (or bad book)....

3.Any suggestions on my conundrum?
Write, just write. If you get yourself into some routine that is even better. Set smaller goals for yourself. Even if it's 500 words a day or a page of script
Good luck
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Old 06-06-2006, 10:57 AM   #10
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1.Where do you write? The environment. Do you listen to music, watch TV, or is it in a quiet place?
On the train to and from work. It's about a 70 minute commute. Sometimes noisey, sometimes quite. Always in my notebook.

2.What inspires you or motivates your brain to work
I enjoy writing. I write about stuff that interests me, and I write about stuff from my everyday life. I work it out through my writing. I started after I got divorced and found that it helps keep me sane and calm.

3.Any suggestions on my conundrum?
Are you sure you really want to do this? Maybe a different hobby would engage your passions more. Don't take that the wrong way, please. It's just that most writing is unspectacular. It's work. Look at it as work, and you'll be on your way. If you take it less seriously than the other work in your life, you might as well just stop or write for yourself in a journal. There's nothing wrong with either choice.
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Old 06-06-2006, 11:18 AM   #11
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1. Ideas come from everywhere. I never write them down, but if I wait the story forms up in my head. Once I've got a head of steam, I write it all down. I work at my computer, usually, with no music or tv or outside stimuli. I wait until I'm alone, because disruptions mess me up.

2. Ideas come when I daydream or draw in my sketchbook. When I draw characters, I usually think up their origens and particulars as I draw them. I usually daydream when I listen to really good music, often in the car, or as I'm working on art for clients.

3. If you have trouble making yourself write, then you may not be ready. Come back in ten or so years, when you really want it. Most writers love to write, can't wait to get back to it, dream about it when they are not writing, don't want to stop, etc. If that's not you, then maybe pursue what you do have a passion for.
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Old 06-06-2006, 11:24 AM   #12
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1.Where do you write? The environment. Do you listen to music, watch TV, or is it in a quiet place?

Coffee shop. I like the low din of other people, but not anything distracting.


2.What inspires you or motivates your brain to work


Life. I keep a journal and have years of stories that I will get to...some already tried and failed but maybe as time passes I'll revisit. Whenever I get an idea I write it down.

3.Any suggestions on my conundrum?
Check out some websites about the tools of writing.
http://artfulwriter.com/ is good
http://www.wordplayer.com
http://www.scriptsecrets.com
http://www.johnaugust.com/

and there are many others.

Instead of looking for inspiration or a new muse, I suggest filling your writer's toolbox with new gadgets to get the gears churning. I have a system, developed with much help, and now I can honestly sit down at any time and write. And not just meandering thoughts, but a real, honest-to-goodness story. If you've got your hammer and nail then you can hang your pictures anywhere at anytime.

Happy writing.
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Old 06-06-2006, 11:33 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Story
3. If you have trouble making yourself write, then you may not be ready. Come back in ten or so years, when you really want it.
I'd say that this isn't great advice, when you write 24/7 for years you may find that writing is not just a matter of having your passion. You've got to have more than that. If it's only passion that drives your writing then you'll eventually run out of gas. The key is to know how to write even when your muse is taking a smoke break.

Last edited by MrGranger; 06-06-2006 at 11:36 AM.
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Old 06-06-2006, 11:33 AM   #14
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1.Where do you write? The environment. Do you listen to music, watch TV, or is it in a quiet place?
I have a studio now that I can work in. If I'm writing dialogue I can't listen to music with lyrics..go figure. I'll listen to more instrumental..jazz, industrial, techno depends on the scenes or what I'm writing. I'm surrounded by action figures my kids have bought me in the past and alot of odd trinkets I've accumulated over the years. A very creative environment.
2.What inspires you or motivates your brain to work
Music, movies, books, everyday conversations. Pretty much anything and everything around me. Thats why I keep a note pad with me. Ideas, dialogue...scenes..they all can come with out warning. I've been known to write on napkins..or sketch out scenes...characters.
3.Any suggestions on my conundrum?[/QUOTE]
Kevin Melrose gave me some excellent advice when I was having a similar problem and it worked for me. Try taking a break and work on something else. Just try to stay active. It will keep the creative juices flowing. I liked the other suggestion ..I believe from buckyrig, about outlining the story and forcing something out. When I began SOULDRIVER I had a beginning and an end. I've been working to connect the two. Stay creatively active!!! Good Luck. Jim Giar
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Old 06-06-2006, 01:11 PM   #15
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1.Where do you write? The environment. Do you listen to music, watch TV, or is it in a quiet place?

I never stop writing. that might sound weird, but i always find myself going over a story, considering how it continues, what comes next. i do most of my idea work in the shower actually. don't ask me why, but it seems to work. as for actually pounding the keys, i can't be around people. human distraction drives me insane. i always have a radio on, usually my mp3 library or XM 48 playing as background. when i'm at home i lock myself in my office, of wait until everyone else is asleep so i can be assured of being left alone.

2.What inspires you or motivates your brain to work?

i get inspiration from a lot of places. if i find myself in a dead writing zone for some reason, i will stop and pick up a book and just read. or go see a movie. something to rest and reset my brain. anything will do as long as it takes me out of story mode and gives me a break. mini golf, paintball, whatever. when i get done, it's usually right back to the writing.

3.Any suggestions on my conundrum?

my advice is to try different things. try pushing through it. if that works for you, then you're golden. if it doesn't, try taking a break from it and moving to something else. no one thing works for everyone, so you have to experiment.
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