Thursday, 10 September 2009

NO PEACE FOR THE MAD

If you’re writing a novel, as in actually writing one rather than just saying you are, you should, after you’ve visited this site, always keep one of these (a pen will do)...









and one of these





by your bed. Some of your best material will depart your subconscious mind and visit about 4am, with the promise to have disappeared by the morning. Write it down.

10 comments:

Tania Hershman said...

Happens to me all the time. Whole stories written in my head. In the morning: gone. I never write them down. Are you supposed to not care about waking up your beloved sleeping next to you, that they won't mind because it's in the service of Art??

TOM J VOWLER said...

I have thin curtains that allow enough of the city's sodium light through for scribbling. (Not that the cat is that easily woken anyway.)

David J Griffin said...

Hi Tom, just discovered your blog; interesting posts, thanks.

I used to have a note pad with me at all times, only now that I work from home it's easy to jump on the comp and tap it out.

Whenever I get some sort of inspiration while in bed, I'll quietly leave the bedroom (making sure my long-suffering wife is soundly asleep) and type it. I found that if I wrote it as a note, the next morning I wouldn't understand my half-asleep scribble; and even if I did, not really certain what the note was meant to be about...

P.S I have sleepless nights thinking about insomnia ;)

TOM J VOWLER said...

Thanks for stopping by, David.

You're right, of course. Reading what I have scrawled in the half light always provides a challenge in the morning.

rebecca said...

I wake up with stories in my head. And, I'll be sure to use the site you've linked...I agree, it's a must, if you're a writer.

pat said...

I end up with biro stains under the pillow and strange garbled secrets of the universe...

TOM J VOWLER said...

Lucky you, Rebecca. Most of us have to squeeze them out like water from a sponge that's been long in the desert.

I can't possibly comment about stains in bed, Pat.

Col Bury said...

Hi Tom,
You're bang on with this advice - many a problem with my writing has been remedied by ideas in the small hours.

Tip (for Tania & Pat): use the reminder function in your mobile and set alarm for the next day. Keep phone on silent while making the note and, as screen lights up, there's no need to disturb partner or make a mess with ink!
Regards,
Col

Nicola Morgan said...

Being a) very lazy b) somewhat disorganised and c) exceptionally lacking in the memory parts of my brains (all of which mean I certainly should write things down as you suggest), I rashly but so far successfully have an entirely different viewpoint: I never write ideas down because I feel that if they're good enough they'll take root anyway. I guess I'm like a gardener who chucks seed on stony ground, on the basis that anything that does grow is going to be really really strong and primed for survival. And when a shoot does appear, I nurture it fantically by thinking about it and thinking about it but still never writing it down. It makes for scary moments sometimes, when I worry that a potentially gorgeous idea may vanish. Thing is, I would never know if it had, because I'd have forgotten it. Works for me!

TOM J VOWLER said...

Interesting stuff, Nicola. If it works for you...