Wednesday, 10 August 2016

How Do You Write?

It's a while since I posted here but there seems to have been lots of different things going on, not least writing whenever I can. But life has also intruded, as it does, and I'm looking forward to a wedding on Friday but then have the sadness of the funeral of a long-time member of our writing group on Monday. On Tuesday, I'll be off to Edinburgh to the Society of Authors in Scotland AGM and lunch which is always a pleasure, not least because I'll be meeting up with some of my writing friends.

Photo courtesy of Pixabay
Anyway, the heading of this post is How Do You Write? I've no doubt mentioned this before (and was even interviewed on the Tiger Pen site about this topic) but it struck me again this morning how many words I get written when sitting in my favourite Costa writing with pen and paper while enjoying my coffee and cake. The photo below is when we were in Stockholm! When I mentioned it on Facebook a short while ago, a few people commented right away so I thought it would be interesting to know how my fellow bloggers and authors write. Do you hand write first and do the words flow better that way?

Last week, on the way to the mall, I had the sudden idea for a new short story, complete with title. By the time I'd finished my coffee, most of the story was written and the words just flowed. Granted, it might have been that particular idea but it has happened before. I've always written more on trains and in cafes but I think it's got to the stage when I might be better writing every first draft that way, then doing the first redraft while typing it up. It's the way I usually write poetry.

It will be interesting to experiment a bit more. Now that I have two short stories away and completed the redraft of the new novel, I have a middle grade book to finish then a couple of novellas waiting. Maybe it will even stop me procrastinating so much, if I can take my notebook and pen everywhere instead of sitting at the computer waiting for inspiration! I'll let you know how it works out. And please let me know what works best for you.



Teresa Ashby said...

It certainly is a mixed time for you at the moment, Rosemary. I'm sorry for the loss of your friend.

It is great that the story flowed as it did. Those are always the best I think - to read and to write.

I'm not sure I could write in a cafe because I am so easily distracted (nosy). The best place for me to really get on with it is in the car in a quiet road!

I hope you have a lovely time at the wedding and at the AGM next week :-) xx

Rosemary Gemmell said...

Thanks for your lovely comment, Teresa. I think I must need the buzz around me as the car would be too quiet!

Nicola said...

My best stories to date have been one's that just pop into my head, fully composed and just waiting for me to type it up. I've tried writing in café's but I get too distracted by people watching and eaves dropping on conversations. I write best when I'm alone, in peace and quiet at home - even though the ideas come about when I'm not writing :) Usually weeding the garden :)

Carolb said...

So sorry to hear you've lost a writing group friend, Rosemary, it's always bittersweet. There's the sadness of their loss, but also the wonderful memories of their time with us, and all the friendship and experience they've shared.

I might make notes of scenes that come to me out of order, but I prefer typing to the computer as that seems to be where it comes together, and while I might use a piece I'd written by hand it will have changed by the time it's typed up. :)

The coffee shop is to noisy for me to concentrate on writing in any depth.

Jean Bull said...

Sorry to hear about the loss of your friend. We've just come back from a family wedding yesterday which was a very joyous time and I hope yours will be tomorrow.
As to writing, I write best initially in pencil in a WHS medium lined A4 note book; I've got loads of them!
Then I edit it as I type it up. My thoughts flow too fast for my fingers to type, and often too fast to write clearly either!
Only once have I dreamt a story and written it down in the morning. I wish it happened more often!

Patsy said...

I almost always write straight onto my laptop. If I had an idea when I didn't have it with me then I would make notes by hand - but I rarely go far without the laptop so it doesn't often happen.

Frances Garrood said...

I write straight onto my PC. I can't get on with a laptop. But like everyone else, I think up ideas all the time, especially just before I go to sleep.

Rosemary Gemmell said...

I love when stories come fully formed, Nicola! Yes, ideas have a habit of arriving when doing something else.

Thanks, Carol. I like editing as I type up anything I've written by hand so it saves time in the end!

Thanks, Jean - glad you enjoyed a wedding! I like writing that way too, except I use a pen. Isn't it great to dream a whole story - doesn't happen to me much!

I think a lot of writers go straight to the laptop these days, Patsy. I do too at times but I definitely get more words down when outside the house writing with pen and paper!

I prefer a PC too, Frances, but have never replaced my old one yet so have to use the laptop for now. Too many ideas/thoughts at night keep me off my sleep!

Wendy's Writing said...

Can you believe I've never written in a cafe? I only ever write at home - sometimes in the living room, sometimes in the conservatory, sometimes in the garden (never in my writing room!) The stories are never complete in my head - they start form a seed and go where they want once I start typing.

Julia Thorley said...

I write notes and ideas on scraps of paper,in my lovely notebooks, on the back of receipts - wherever I get the urge. When it comes to 'proper' writing, though, I need to be sitting at my PC (not a laptop: the keys are too close together for a touchtypist) in my home office looking out at my garden. I might have music on, but never talkie radio. I've tried sitting in cafes, but, like Teresa, I'm just too darned interested in what other folk are saying!

Joanna said...

I'm so sorry you have lost a friend, Rosemary. I hope you enjoy the wedding and the AGM.

I always write straight to my PC, although I might make a brief note if something occurs to me when I'm out and about. It's wonderful that your story was mostly complete. I so rarely have that experience. It usually only comes together as I type.

Good luck with all your writing projects! xxx

Rosemary Gemmell said...

Sorry - late responding to some comments!

I never knew that, Wendy! Yes, I sometimes start with a seed and it grows when I start writing.

Sounds like most of us write ideas etc on scraps of paper and in note books, Julia, and I like listening to music in the background when typing. However, I'm not a touch typist!

Thanks, Joanna.Now I would have thought you did write in longhand first, Joanna - don't know why!

Anonymous said...

Sorry for the loss of your friend, Rosemary, and hope the wedding went well. I like to have either pencil and notepad, or ink pen and fancy paper and jot notes until the idea forms in my head. Then I type from the notes. Sometimes I get the urge to read instead, so give in of course, and hot chocolate and cake or a biccy or two always helps the words along as well.

Rosemary Gemmell said...

Thanks, Suzy. I like the way you work!

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