Behind The Scenes

Ever wonder just what I’m doing when I’m writing?  I mean, sure, you know that I write, you read what I write, but do you know what that process actually looks like?

You probably don’t want to know. There’s a lot of crying, ice cream, and questioning my writerly ability.

Pushing all that aside, it may be interesting to get a peek at how I write.  With this being the first week of NaNoWriMo, I’m especially interested in what kinds of things others are doing to write.  So don’t leave all the talking to me!  Comment and let me in on your writing process.  (Wait, stop scrolling!  I didn’t mean now…read the post first. 😉 )

I’ll be answering a few questions given to me by moonstonemaiden from the Behind the Scenes tag she tagged me in, and I promise I’ll leave the crying and questioning out.

Is there a certain snack you like to eat while writing?

I don’t normally eat while I’m writing. Every now and then when I’m having trouble concentrating or I’m just feeling stuck but I don’t want to quit, I’ll get a small bowl of M&Ms or trail mix or Doritos (although I can’t type when I’m eating those things…unless I want an orange keyboard).

When do you normally write? Morning, evening, or afternoon?

I don’t like writing in the afternoon. For some reason my creativity doesn’t like the middle of the day and refuses to come out.  Trying to write something good during the afternoon is like trying to find ocean waves in the Sahara desert.   Not going to happen.

But the good news is that my creative muse is both a morning and a night person (or uh…I guess it’s not a person). I get the most out of my writing time if I either write first thing when I wake up or at night.  I think I’ve had my best writing sessions at night though.  The later the hour, the stronger my power. 🙂

(This is my muse at night…especially when I’m trying to sleep)

Where do you write?

I do most of my writing at my desk since I own a desktop. Sometimes I’ll go the old-fashioned way and write with a pen and notebook, and in those cases I’m usually sitting in the Lazy Boy in my living room or, if the weather is nice, in the hammock on my deck.

How often do you start a new novel?

I’ve never actually started a novel.  I get tons of ideas for stories all the time, but I know they aren’t all novel-length.   The really short ones (1,000-5,000 words) I may just sit down and start writing.  No outlines or any kind of planning.  Sometimes all I have is the first sentence, and I just go from there.  For anything I think might be short story material, I jot down whatever is already in my head and leave it there for me to work on later.  I kind of do the same thing for the ideas that are long enough and I like enough to turn into a novel.

Do you listen to music while you write?

Music make it so much easier to write. I’ll be staring at my word document thinking I don’t really want to write, but as soon as the music is on, magic happens.

I have a massive playlist filled with movie soundtrack or videogame soundtrack music. I have stuff like, How to Train Your Dragon, Robin Hood, The Last Samurai, Gladiator, a bunch of Assassin’s Creed, and of course Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit.

What do you write on: laptop or paper?

I do most of my writing on my desktop, but occasionally I need to do something different and I’ll grab a notebook and get to work.  I usually only use paper when I’m stuck and I just need to start writing with nothing specific in mind.  So, when I have the wispiest story idea in my head, but I’m having trouble getting it out, I’ll use a notebook to write whatever comes to my mind first.

I write because… 

This best explains it.

And there are 5 more questions, but I’m going to do those tomorrow.  Don’t get mad at me! Blame it on NaNo.

Look for part 2, and don’t forget to let me know what your writing routines look like.   🙂




20 thoughts on “Behind The Scenes

  1. I’m usually the most inspired to write first thing in the morning, but finding time then is hard (lots of kids wanting lots of breakfast gets in the way), so I keep my tablet in my back pocket with the WP app running and start a new draft with each idea that comes to mind so I can fill them in later and not forget. Before tablets I’d keep a little flip notepad in my pocket and a pen behind my ear.

    For other creative pursuits I’m always at my best when it’s dark outside. I’ve noticed that a lot of creative people tend to be night owls, I wonder why that is…


    1. Oh yes…sometimes life gets in the way of creativity. But it sounds like you have a good plan for recording those creative moments so you can work on them later.
      I’ve noticed that too! I read an article once that said that creative people tend to stay up later. Maybe being sleep deprived makes our brains react differently or something…?


  2. I live in the far reaches of internet coverage, MiFi is my only source of connectivity, horrible. I use my MacBook air at home to compose and then travel 3.5 or 11 miles to my daughters homes to put out a blog, upload pics and such. The 11 mile trip, especially May – Sept. is the best as I’m on her Condo balcony at a Bistro table overlooking a river, Marina and the Brew River Restaurant. An occasional barge passes in one direction or another. It is definitely a mood brewing setting. When the weather changes I’m at the dining room, still with a view of the river. The Seagulls, Geese and Osprey add their own music when I’m outside. There is also a skinny terrorizing cat named Roux who harasses me from time to time. He’s declawed, walks the keyboard from time to and bites me on the ankle.

    At the closer venue, I’m on my eldest daughters porch in good weather and the dining room table the rest of the time. No scenic view here, just an old mid 1800’s farmhouse. I have a hundred pound Yellow Lab to keep me company there.

    As for music, soft background instrumentals fills the bill. I like to compose in AM, I’m a morning person. Coffee is good early, close out the day usually with a glass of wine.

    No novel here, some short stuff here and there, mostly my interpretation of people, places, things and happenings. My wife of 50 years thinks of me as a Charles Kuralt writer. Oh she of great faith.

    That’s my writing in a nut shell, glad to share.


    1. I would love to be able to look at a river when I write. Like you said, definitely a mood brewing setting.
      To have to drive somewhere every time you want to update your blog…that’s dedication!
      I love that you have pets to keep you company as you write. My Jack Russell is too hyper to sit in my lap or by my chair when I write. 😀
      Your wife is awesome for believing it you!
      Thanks for sharing. 🙂


      1. That awesome woman is at the gym at the moment, left the house at 0450. 10 days ago she ran the 10K at the Marine Corps Marathon. We’re both 72 and celebrate 50 years together later this month. She is a wife, friend, mother, grandmother, great grandmother and my hero. She makes a great Shoo Fly pie and yes, she is awesome. I am blessed. Have a wonderful day Megan, I enjoy your works.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I’m so happy for you both! Not many people have the privilege of staying with the same person that long. You’re both awesome for sticking together. 🙂


  3. The later the hour, the stronger my power…I love this thought! probably because it applies to me. Anyway…back to your questions. I write with my back facing the kitchen. And that’s because I’m usually cooking something while writing. Just the movement from place to place…just the measuring, the stirring, the mixing, the pouring…all these little movements stop the flow of thought just long enough for a fresh perspective to pop into my head, a perspective necessary for my writing to continue towards completion. It works every time!


  4. Love this! I love the idea of NaNoWriMo. My favorite place to write is the cafe at school. It has these really comfy, squishy chairs, so I take my shoes off and curl up on it. Usually I use headphones to block out the noise around me and listen to calming music. My best writing comes at night too 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hans Zimmer is an amazing composer. The music for Gladiator is just so moving (not to mention the story itself is amazing). Great music and great acting came together and made a truly unforgettable film.
      So I guess you find it easier to write in silence. Sometimes I like to write that way, but if my family is home the noise gets distracting and music comes to my rescue.

      Liked by 1 person

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