Collection of Writing Processes

Posted: April 12, 2014 in Writing Advice
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  • Staying up late/getting up early/writing on the go/setting aside time to write

Night-time awakes a more alert chemistry in me (Thomas Wolfe)

Early morning writers: Sylvia Plath at 4 am; Jack London, Toni Morrison, and Katherine Anne Porter at 5 am; Kurt Vonnegut  at 5:30 am; Graham Greene, Ernest Hemingway, and Edith Wharton at 6 am.

Naps are essential to my process (William Gibson)

  • Have a cue, a deadline, a routine, and a reward

Anthony Trollope used the egg-time method and pushed himself to produce 250 words every 15 minutes.

Get to the typewriter right now and finish this (Ray Bradbury)

A writer who waits for the ideal conditions under which to work will die without putting word on paper (E.B. White)

I had a ritual once of lighting a candle and writing by its light and blowing it out when I was done for the night…but now I simply hate to write (Jack Kerouac)

  • When in doubt, drink

Coffee gives us the capacity to engage a little longer in the exercise of our intellects (Balzac)

I need an hour alone before dinner, with a drink, to go over what I’ve done that day…the drink helps (Joan Didion)

  • Find a process and make it a habit

I like the slowness of writing by hand. Then I type it up and scrawl all over that (Susan Sontag)

In an unmoored  life like mine, sleep and hunger and work arrange themselves to suit themselves, without consulting me (Kurt Vonnegut)

Victor Hugo walked and mentally composed his works except for when he wrote The Hunchback of Notre Dame (He wrote it under a self-imposed house arrest). Aldous Huxley and Virginia Woolf were all writers who walked to create.

Charles Dickens had an eclectic menagerie of animals, and paper knife, a green vase, a desk calendar, blue ink, and writing quills to create the setting of his writing desk. He would spend time writing from 9 am to 2 pm and then went for a brisk walk at a pace of 4.8 miles per hour.

Some writers need a specific pencil or a certain color ink, but James Joyce chose the strangest writing instrument due to poor eyesight–cardboard and crayons.

These writers thought great thoughts while in the bathtub: Agatha Christie, Benjamin Franklin, and Vladimir Nabokov


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