I hope that title isn’t misleading. No, I don’t mean rituals as in last rites or sacrificing virgins. (Pshh, that’s amateur stuff.) I wanted to chat a bit today about the creative process.
It seems everyone has a ritual of some kind when it comes to writing. I can’t get on Facebook without seeing a writer posting a meme about coffee. I hate coffee. I’m a tea drinker, and usually not before I write because I cannot sit still enough to write if I’m pumping any kind of caffeine into my system. Some people have to shut themselves up or wait until no one is home. Others write outside or in a special place just for brainstorming.
Some people need music to relax their mind. Music is a great inspiration for many scenes of my books. I have playlists on YouTube for certain book series. But I can’t listen to music when I write. I can pause, listen a bit for to grasp at those flighty butterflies of inspiration, but then it must be cut off while I’m writing.
I’m that person who writes whenever I can. NaNoWriMo would never work for me because having a set word count a day with an end goal in mind is just nuts to me. I can’t sit and force myself to write if I have no drive to. If the ideas aren’t flowing, why force myself to put out crap? Then there are those days when ideas are crowding my brain and I have no time to write at all. I’m a complete mess in that department so schedules and word counts and “Put aside so much time a day…” doesn’t work for me. I fit it in when I can.
And you know what, even with my crazy schedule and constant interruptions, I think I’m doing okay. Do I put out as many books as I would like to? No, but I think I am putting out better quality work now with no schedule at all than when I was years ago trying to stick to other authors’ advice about how my process “should be.” Hey, you know me and my opinion on that kind of stuff: Do what works for you!
And now back to my regularly scheduled beta reading while someone clangs dishes around loudly in the background. Whee!