Writer Quirks

Saturday, April 21, 2012

So, I am going to confess some of my weird writer quirks.

Don't look so shocked. I'm betting you guys have some weird quirks too. (I'm looking at you non-crust eaters, favorite sock lovers, and color coders.) So, yes, I have a few weird quirks that can be attributed to my writing 'habit'.

You might wonder what made me think about this. Well, let me start at the beginning. My husband wanted to watch an action packed movie tonight and I said no. I'd rather watch something a little more lighthearted; something without a serious plot. He threw me a grumpy look and said, "Why can't we ever watch an interesting movie when you're working on a book? You're so weird!" He's right of course, I am weird, but this is something that I have a reason for. I don't like having other plots bouncing around in my head when I'm working on something. I want to be immersed in what I'm working on, let it simmer like a good soup. And if you throw in some veggies that don't jive well with the garlic or tomatoes you are cooking then your soup is ruined. It doesn't taste right and you have to start over. From scratch. (Another weird writer quirk? I compare my writing process to cooking. Or painting. And sometimes to cooking with paints. No, that last one isn't right. *shakes head* Back to the topic at hand...)

So, right now, there are three episodes of Justified on my DVR that my husband and I have not watched. It's like torture to him. And to me, when I think about it. Let's be honest folks, not watching Timothy Olyphant is definitely a form of torture. But, I just can't let my brain dip down into the delicious gun-slinging, Kentucky drama without wanting to write Mr. Olyphant into a scene in my book. (Or in my dreams.) So, it's the same thing with movies that have a gripping plot. I just can't sit down and watch it if I'm plotting. It's weird, it's annoying, and it's part of my process.

I do, however, have some movies that I know inside and out, that I can watch without it upsetting my process. In fact, when I'm painting and not writing, I often turn to these movies to amuse me in the background. What movies? Well, let me tell you! Love Actually. I actually love this movie. (See what I did there? Why are you groaning?) The soundtrack is one of the best movie soundtracks that I have ever heard and I'm a sucker for a British accent. (Oh no! I've revealed my weakness!) The Goonies! The theme music makes me smile. The 80's clothes and hair make me happy. I love the sappy moments and heart pounding action. (Okay, okay. I mean the light hearted action and happy ever after.) Harry and the Hendersons is another one that I can have on and laugh along to, without actually watching. (This also might explain my new obsession with the Discovery Channel's Finding Bigfoot. Hm.) Pride and Prejudice with Kiera Knightly. Again, I love the music and the accent. Also, watching hunky Mr. Darcy as he walks through the field in the last scene in slow motion. (Okay, so my dvd player doesn't have a slow motion option, but my imagination does!)

Here are a couple of other weird writing quirks that I have:

1.  I have a favorite table to sit at when I'm writing at my favorite coffee shop. I can see the whole shop from that spot and there is no one behind me. Makes it easier to concentrate. (And no, I don't pretend to be a spy most of the time.)

2.  I can't write when it's completely quiet.

3. I write better at night. (Much to my chagrin.)

4.  I listen to music on repeat when plotting a scene.

5.  I often plot while cleaning the house and listening to music on repeat. (My poor family.)

6.  If I'm stuck on a scene, I can hop in the car and go for a drive. I almost always work out my toughest scenes while driving.

So, those are some of my writerly quirks. If you can't guess, I have other quirks and I'd love to know that I'm not alone. What are some of your quirks? C'mon! Share!

And for those of you that do not follow my author page on Facebook, I am offering up a goody! If we can reach 60 reviews for Mortal Obligation on Amazon by Sunday (April 29th) then I will post the Immortal Grave prologue on my blog early. We're only 9 away! Can we do it? I think so! Just post your honest review (the good and the bad) by Sunday and Monday you will get the whole prologue. :)


  1. Heeey Yooooou Guuuys!!! Loved this post! I adored getting an inside look at how you create these awesome stories!
    PS You have AMAZING taste in movies!

  2. Hi, found this post through another Facebook page. Sounds like I have a not-so-evil double out there. lol. And my hubby feels the same when I refuse to watch movies that draw me in too much. Light-hearted Rom-coms are the way to go when I'm in the 'writing phase'.
    I've found that painting, for me, is a way to escape the constant chatter in my head of characters deciding their own fate, since, with a brush in hand, I don't usually think of anything at all--except maybe colours and lines. Handy, really.
    Anyway, great post. It's always good to get inside another author's headspace...I spend too much time in my own. I also listen to my songs on repeat too often, kind of making film clips out of them that fit with my stories. Muse and 30 Secs to Mars are my faves.

    1. A.M., the film clips you are talking about? I call them music videos for my book. LOL! I tell my sister (who I bounce ideas off of, that all the time.) It's like directing your very own music video. :) So glad I'm not alone in that!


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