Thursday, November 19, 2009

Magic time

The more I write, the harder it gets. I sit at the computer and I edit the words as I type them, and from now on, I’m going to try and do that less and less. The words flow less easily now than they used to when I first started writing, something that indicates my knowledge of good writing versus just words, and also something I regret in some ways.

But there is a time of the day, when everything seems to flow, at least in my head. As I’m lying down to sleep, and I think of my current WIP, the characters seem so clear, their words and voices ring so true and even occasionally I think of major turning points. It’s by far my most creative time, and while I can remember most of what I think about, when I sit at the computer to type, that half-asleep clarity, the pure creation deserts me.

Sometimes I get inspiration from taking a long walk and letting my mind roam, and sometimes from mediocre movies. A great movie fulfills its potential in a way that is awe inspiring, and wonderful to watch, but a mediocre movie, especially one that flows from a really interesting concept allows me to rethink the original concept in a way that could work well into a story. Movies like The Crow, and Dark City had amazing concepts never fully realized. And it’s far less intimidating than trying to live up the wonder that was Aliens or Jaws.

Does this happen to anyone else? Is there any other time that works for pure creation? I need a new fix, something closer to absolute wakefulness that can take me to the computer and actually writing words on the screen.

8 comments:

Chevy Stevens said...

Walks always help me, but for some reason a really hot shower works, too. I can stand in there for a long time, thinking through plot problems, brainstorming characters,working through dialogue. Then I race to my desk still in a towel to make notes. I've thought about getting some of those crayons for the bath and using them on the shower walls.

Sinead M said...

Those crayons are an awesome idea.. I have those, and have been letting the kids play with them..

Well no more of that..

Eileen said...

It used to be when I'd be out running. Things would suddenly become clear. I think as I get older and creakier that happens less and less. Apparently I'm too busy thinking about the pain in my heel and that weird twinge in my hip to have epiphanies.

Molly O'Keefe said...

Eileen - having taken a break from running and now, when I do go running I'm pushing a giant running stroller with a kid who wants to climb out - so I hear you. Running is not the source of joy/creativity it once was. Though, those days when I get out without the stroller- holy cats - I want to cry at how good it all is.

A hot shower! Yes!!! I think anytime something physical can seperate you from your head - your head will just start talking. That made no sense. MAureen got me drunk last night. Sinead, that pub across the street -- when you're drinking again, that's our first stop.

That's right - a pub across the street. My life is full of blessings....

Maureen McGowan said...

Falling asleep is when I tend to work stuff out, too.

I heard at least a couple of people lately extol the virtues of writing as soon as you wake up, or even before you really wake up. One of these authors wakes himself at 4:30 every day, opens his laptop, which he's already set up the night before to have grey writing on a black background, so that the light of the computer doesn't wake him. And he writes for a few hours, then goes back to bed.
But I know that kind of idea doesn't fit in your mommy with small kids lifestyle, Sinead... doesn't fit in mine either, because, well, I'm not insane. ;-)

Maureen McGowan said...

Oh, the pub across from Molly's house! Sinead you will LOVE it. Not only is it tres cool inside, not only does it have a great beer menu, it has a huge patio out front (used to be a car mechanics or gas station?) with a fire pit where you can drink beer while roasting marshmallows or toasting chestnuts. Right on freaking Queen St. How cool is that?

Eileen said...

I wanna go to the pub, too! That sounds awesome. S'mores and beer and smart women to talk with? Could it get better than that?

Sinead M said...

so jealous of drinking and pubs and the pub across the street, although in the new hood, there are three within ten minutes.. all great.. so we will have a pub off..

And no more drinking without me:)

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