Sunday, March 16, 2014

The Incredible Reveal

I have a desk!!!!

So, since I moved into my apartment back in October, I've had my work-area generally located on the dining room table, or on a table in front of the couch.

This meant I had a tendency to spread out, lounge and be overall unproductive. The area around my desk would be littered with trash, notes, plates and cups, and it was legit the messiest spot in my house.

One of my friends here in town was doing a bit of a purge and this desk (pictured) was one of the things she wanted to get rid of. Naturally, I was all about grabby hands with this.

isn't it GORGEOUS?

So now I've got a dedicated work area and I'm determined to keep it clean and organized. I'm particularly fond of my brand-new Gryffindor banner above the computer. I got that today and I can't stop staring at it. It's beautiful.

But setting up the desk got me thinking about productive atmosphere. Jenna recently found an app called Coffitivity, which puts on the sounds of a Coffee Shop in an effort to create a productive atmosphere. I love the idea, but I haven't really tried to use it yet.

I generally write to music that relates to my WIP, either in mood or lyrics, though lately I've been trying more instrumental music. At the moment, I'm listening to Coffitivity mixed with Rainymood to see how well it works for me. (It's lovely to listen to but I want to see if it actually increases my productivity at all.)

If I get really good momentum with my writing, I won't notice any noise at all--I'll start off listening to a playlist in a particular order and come out of my writing-daze half-way through the list without having noticed.

How about y'all? What do you listen to/not listen to when you're trying to be productive?

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

The Fear Of New Things

I've been trying new things lately.

how i imagine you're reacting to this thrilling update!

I've been playing with plotting, listening to instrumental music when I write, and new ways of playing with POV, as well as timeline.

I usually write in a very linear fashion. Point A to Point B and so on, so forth. It always appeared confusing when other writers would talk about writing the end before the middle, etc. But I also scoffed at plotting in general, so what do I know? I'm still learning. (Who isn't?)

The other night, I tried two new things at once.

I wrote a scene that the main body of work has not reached yet, and I broke away from the POV I generally use. Both of these things actually worked out better than I'd hoped for. I'm rather proud of it, in fact.

I'm going to use a video game reference now. If you've ever played Skyrim (or watched someone play), you know that you can play one of two ways. First Person, where you have a limited viewpoint and you see only what the character sees, or Third Person, where you have a more broad view, and you see more of the surroundings.

In writing, it's more complicated--there are subsets of each POV, and that's ignoring Second Person completely.

But I'm going to focus on the ones I mentioned before. I prefer First Person narrow viewpoint in most of my writing--rarely venturing into Third because I personally find it harder to pinpoint my character's personality in that POV. When I write, I imagine that I am my character--it's all her brain, her eyes, and I see what she sees. This may be why my drafts tend to be rather limited in settings description. So when I was writing the other night, I decided to try something new.

I decided to write the scene as if my character had broken away from herself, and became a shadow on the wall. It ended up being an...educational...shift in perspective. For the scene I was writing, it was necessary that she become emotionally compromised, and this actually aided in showing just how far down the hole her stability had gone. Because it was in her own voice, still First Person POV, but it was a sharper, less biased description. Rather than keeping the blinders on, I took them off and I could see further out beyond my character.

I ended up writing nearly a thousand words just for this scene and it had me nearly in tears because it was so intense.

So today's point is...don't be afraid to try new things. It might help you figure out how to handle a particular plot point, and it may put you more in touch with the character's state of mind as well. (It can also help with your weak points. Like it helped me with my setting descriptions.)

Alright guys! Time for a sexy party!