Monday, October 12, 2009

My Writing Habits in 10 Parts

My Writing Habits in 10 Parts
By Michael P. Geffner

1) I love writing outside. Can't stand being shackled to my desk. Write mostly at 24-hour cafes in downtown Manhattan.

2) I love writing after midnight. My best work has mostly come between 2-4 am. Who knows what it is that stirs me those hours. And frankly, who cares? The fact, is, I know this about myself and it works for me.

3) I love reading something great - sections of books or long magazine articles - before sititing down to write. My favorite for this exercise is Gay Talese's Fame and Obscurity. Awesome and timeless. Really gets my creative juices flowing.

4) I love having my lead paragraphs fully polished and ready to go before writing any other parts of the story. Without those first four, five graphs to guide me, I'm completely lost. So I often kill myself to get this done.

5) I love reading vocabulary books before I write. By doing this, I almost always discover a great word that perfectly fits my story.

6) I love having my cup of French Roast coffee, piping hot and luscious smelling, right there at my left hand. My drug of choice. My friend. My security blanket. Without it, I can't function.

7) I love taking breaks, even take a short walk, when I'm stuck for the next graph. This is far better than hitting my head with a hammer or suffering a nervous breakdown.

8) I love writing three hours a days, but that's it. It's not within my DNA to go longer. I'm incredibly jealous of those that can write all day.

9) I love thinking about my stories in the shower. Some of my best work has come that way. Sometimes, I'll lose track of time doing this, to where the bathtub nearly flows over.

10) I love waking up in the middle of the night, struck by an idea for my story. Sometimes, I'm disciplined enough to write the idea down on a piece of paper; sometimes, I'm not. Sometimes, I remember the idea; sometimes I don't. Sometimes, the idea is pure genius; sometimes, sadly, it's utter crap.

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