Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Are writers lonely?

How lonely are writers in reality?

There’s this romantic notion out there that writers are required to be secluded—working manically on their craft, perhaps drinking up a perfect storm and paying the ultimate success for their creativity by going off the deep end. How much of this is true or fable?

I’m asking all of you this question: Do you need absolute silence to write—to hear your muse? Or can you write amongst the fray—TV blaring, children crying and life in your face?

For me it varies. When I’m rested I can stand more noise and activity around me and work like it’s not there, but other times when I’m tired I get annoyed at the smallest sound. (I’m just a ball of fun to live with, not!)

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this!

Best, January Bain

For stories of vampires and romance. . .

Coming in 2012 Forever Man

8 comments:

AstonWest said...

I usually need some sort of background noise to drown out the constant ringing in my ears...but with distractions around (such as small children...none of our own...and adults that act like children), it's near impossible to get anything done. An iPod is my friend...

January Bain said...

I have the same condition and was told by my doctor that it can be resolved with a "masking" earing aid but it costs big bucks and the Canadian medical establishment does not pay for the device. So I live with it too and try to stay away from annoying people! Kudos on using music. Thanks for replying.

Big Mike said...

I need uninterrupted time to maintain the fictional world in my head. Its why I get up at 4 AM and right till 8AM every morning. If the wife, or GD, or whatever comes in, I drop all the visual blocks I'm juggling in my mind's eye.

Michael Davis (Davisstories.com)
Author of the Year, (2008 and 2009)

Julie Eberhart Painter said...

I like uninterrupted silence, but don't mind a friend's calling when it's important. My children are middleaged, so they are hard at work themselves.

Most writers are hard-working, not-in-the-least lonely souls. If nothing is happening, we can invent it, reinvent it -- and control it. Maybe we are control freaks. But, we don't have to pay for tickets to life. We create life.

Rosemary Gemmell said...

I often like background music when writing, to fit the period/genre if possible. One of my best places to write is a table away at the side in my favourite cafe in the mall (once a week). For some reason, the words flow away from my lonely study!

TKToppin said...

Generally, I prefer quiet but not absolute silence (I too get a slight ringing in the ears from utter silence that can become quite deafening).

Quiet time gets the flow of the story going in my head and I can visualize it properly. Also, a window helps, you know, like staring outside. If I do listen to music, it has to be instrumental, but on really low. I wrote a fight scene in the final of the trilogy with classical music (most helpful, especially Beethoven or some of Mozart's more upbeat tunes). Even Enya helps...but normally, I don't listen to any music when I'm writing...too distracting.

January Bain said...

Thanks for all the helpful comments!

Linda Rettstatt said...

Lonely? Are you kidding? With all these voices in my head? For some reason, I can write anywhere at any time--my living room with or without the TV on, a quiet corner of the library, even in a casino.