I read an article a week or so ago by Rachelle Gardner about training your muse. At the time I didn’t think too much about it. In fact, I think after I read it, I shut the internet off and went back to writing. It must have had more of an impact than I realized because I’ve been making small changes to get ready to write.
The first, which I’ve talked about here, is to set aside time to write. I turn off the internet and free write for 15 minutes, then dive into my current work. I don’t get to turn the internet back on until I have 1,000 words. It works most days.
The others have to do with the senses. Before I come up to write in the morning, I make a cup of decaf with milk. I only put in milk if I’m going to write. (I call it my fake latte.) If I drink decaf outside of my office, it’s black. Sometimes I’ll bring some fruit or cheese upstairs with me, but I’m really trying not to eat a whole lot when I write. It’s a slippery slope from grapes to chocolate. I do listen to music on the hard days, but that’s the only time I listen to that play list, and it’s only instrumental music. Words distract me. So does instrumental music that I know, so it can’t be anything overly familiar. Because I’ve been involved in music since I was 10, I tend to learn it quickly, so my play list changes. I’ve had to take out bagpipe music. The exception is the soundtrack from Last Of The Mohicans. I’ve been using that for writing music since about 2001.
Then we have the picture on my desk:
Nope, it’s not my family. It was taken last February in Destin, FL at the Deep Thinker’s Retreat. Everyone there was wonderful and helpful, but Susan May Warren and Rachel Hauck helped me so much that I framed our photo together and put it on the corner of my desk so they can stare at me. It’s like I know they know if I’m goofing off!
I have plans to find a specific scent to have in my office, since smell is closely linked to memory. There’s a store in a town we like to visit that sells scented beads. They have dozens of different scents, so many I get a headache walking in there. My plan is to go the next time we’re in the area and create a scent to keep in my office so when I walk in and smell it, I’m ready to write. I don’t know if it will work, but I hope it will.
So that’s the plan for now. Any other suggestions?