Not everything that has been suggested in books and blogs about getting in the mood to write helps every person. I know I’ve tried listening to melodious music, taking wonderfully wandering walks, drink out of inspirational and creative coffee cups, and writing without withholding words. But those don’t usually spark my interest into writing. The first few just make me want to read, do art, or knit a hat. The last just frustrates me to the point of jamming my fingers onto the keys at random to see if I can create any words until I get so annoyed with the sound that I delete the two pages of garble that I left in my quake. So here are some of the tricks I’ve tested, and found to work, at least on occasion.
Go for a walk.
This is just a good idea in general. The fresh air, the sounds of the leaves being ruffled in the breeze or the cars driving down the road, the blood pumping through your veins… It can truly clear your mind and put you in a better mood. But beyond that, going for a walk can help you look at your surroundings in a new light, which could spark some writing ideas and solutions. Plus, as you probably spend a fair amount of time your computer, the vitamin-D is always a huge bonus.
Read your favourite author.
When I read certain authors, I feel inspired to write. This is a big thing for me. I’ll sit down and expect to just get lost in the story, but I’ll stand back up with my mind racing with ideas or an overwhelming excitement to create a beautiful work of art with the keys on my computer. The author whose stories and writing styles inspire me the most is Douglas Adams. His works are just so unique and wonderfully nihilistic and sassy, and he breaks so many rules about descriptive language that I can’t help but stand in awe of his writings. Not only does reading help inspire me to write, but it also helps me write in the style and voice I enjoy most. Even if I am not emulating him, perusing his tales sets my mind running with descriptions, story ideas, and excitement for creating something that might be able to bring such joy to another person some day.
Watch an inspirational video or TED talk.
I find this tends to help me most when I am wanting to write an inspirational nonfiction piece for my blog. Sometimes the videos leave me so overwhelmed with emotion, that I have to step back from the computer for a while before I do any writing, but once I sit down, I still have so much to say (not to mention slightly more organised thoughts). Occasionally though, watching such videos can actually inspire me to sit down and just write out as many words as I can in one day for a short story or my novel or several different projects.
Listen to a favourite album or soundtrack.
Music can always be a great help for focusing while trying to work, whatever the project is. However, you have to know what music distracts you and what music inspires you and helps you stay on task. I often listen to a Harry Potter playlist on Spotify. The music is shuffled, and I have to skip certain songs, otherwise my brain becomes far too nostalgic. But hearing the wonderful scores can help me set the mood of a story or sit down and write for hours.
Go on an adventure.
Doing something new or something that you’ve not done in ages can generate various ideas for stories or scenes, especially when you imagine your characters going on the same adventures. While in Europe this summer, I had the opportunity to experience more than I could have anticipated, and those experiences have given me a few story ideas or situations in which I could place my characters, like riding in a cable car, riding a boat across an underground lake, roaming palaces, and hiking atop the Alps. Story ideas and inspiration await you at the ends of your journeys.
Get dressed for the occasion.
Sometimes just getting dressed as if I’m going to the office or putting my hair up can help me feel more put-together. When I feel like that, I can usually accomplish much more than if I just wake up, roll over, and grab my computer. If I dress like it’s my job, then I’ll treat it as such. Which I should do, especially considering that I would love to write full-time some day.
There are other times, though, in which I need to change into my comfies, cuddle up in a blanket, and whip out my notebook or computer. I tend to gauge my mood and my environment and act accordingly, which tends to end up with me wearing a high-waisted skirt and a blouse and putting my hair up as best I can.
Come up with stories based off your top interest or fandom.
This may sound a bit silly. But sometimes you need a break from your planned writing topics and projects, and you just need to write for fun. I find that this can help me stop procrastinating and actually sit down with a pencil in hand or a keyboard at my fingertips and write. And once I’ve finished (or at least started) whatever bizarre topic or story I’ve decided upon, I have an even deeper desire to write. Once I get to that point, I switch to the projects I need to be working on and write as much as I can until I finish or hit a good stopping point. I tend to choose various creatures from Doctor Who or Harry Potter or my favourite animals or places. Whatever works for you, fiction or nonfiction, write about it. It may surprise you how much changing projects can help you with your current ones.
What are some of your tricks for getting into a writing mood? Let me know down below!