I enjoy learning about how the creative process works for a lot of people. No two are alike really, and no process is consistent between works in progress I am discovering. I like reading about how Hemingway would start each day off with reading a stack of newspapers from 6am until 10. Of course he followed that up with prolific drinking and by the middle of the afternoon he would be done, as well as wasted.
Hunter S. Thompson maintained a steady rhythm of drugs, pills, booze, and blacking out throughout his work day. It seemed to work for him. Until it didn’t.
So, for posterity, here’s what I do.
Wake up in the morning. Raise my weary head. I’ve got an old coat for a pillow…
(Ten points to Hufflepuff if you get the reference).
Wake up. Grab my brush and put on a little makeup…
Okay, for reals this time.
Wake up with the sun. Take the dog outside. Check my triumvarate of procrastination for anything new overnight: Facebook, Instagram, Email. Message my VIPs. Make coffee. Make oatmeal. Consume mass quantities. Wake up with a shower. Check social media some more.
It doesn’t matter what it is, it’s all part of the process. Procrastination is what other people call “chores” or “things I have to do so my life doesn’t fall apart around me.” It’s a matter of symantics. It’s usually laundry or dishes or cleaning the house. Sometimes it’s taking the dog to the park and throwing the tennis ball for twenty minutes. Wearing her out means she will leave me alone when I need to work.
Write. Sometimes I write a blog post here or on the travel site. Sometimes I just jump right into the book. I try to get at least 1,000 words down before I stop.
Clean up dog puke. You’d be surprised how often this happens. I guess it keeps the blood circulating from sitting on my butt all day.
Have a snack or eat a late lunch. Make more coffee. Write.
Or take a nap. Yes, even after drinking coffee. I think I might have ADHD.
After the nap, probably visit with some friends on the phone or text. By now it’s late afternoon, the son is getting mighty low. Make a snack. Make more coffee.
Write. Write for hours.
After that, it is probably around 10 or so. To make my brain wind down, I’ve been reading before bed. Recently it has been The Night Circus. I didn’t like the book at first but it was a slow burn in the beginning and now I’m enjoying it for its world-building and sense of wonder. It reminds me a litte bit of if Ray Bradbury had written Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell. Reading someone else’s words usually has one of two effects on me. Either it makes my brain shut up or it inspires me to write more. This one has been doing the former.
Rest. Repeat. Squeeze in some therapy, allergy shots, and other various necessities. Sometimes I take the day off to get more ideas. I take a drive. I visit with family. I might even just binge watch a show or play a video game. I’ve being playing Conan Exiles lately.
That’s it. It’s not knife tricks and absinthe with Gertrude Stein, but it’s a process.