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Environmental Inspirations

Discussion in 'Chit Chat' started by Info Gatherer, May 24, 2022.

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  1. Info Gatherer

    Info Gatherer New Member

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    Hey all, I am doing a small project, mostly conceptual, about the effects that the visual and auditory surroundings may have on the writing process. So if anyone has the time it would be great to get some answers to some the following questions:

    • What, if any, environment do you personally consider to be the most conducive to your writing?
    • Do you think listening to music is useful when writing?
    • Do you think any other kind of sound is useful when writing? (such as having a movie play in the background, or the chatter of people in a café etc.)
    • Do you ever take inspiration, or become motivated, but visual elements during the writing process?
    • Do you consider the interface of your writing software to have any effect on your writing?
    • Do you think having a fitting environment to your writing subject is useful? (listening to western music while writing about cowboys, or having the lights turned off while writing a scary story etc.)
     
  2. pmmg

    pmmg Istar

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    For Info Gatherer

    What, if any, environment do you personally consider to be the most conducive to your writing?

    I tend to write at the same time every night--between 12:00am and 1:00am. I like to know everyone else is out and no one is coming to ask me anything. I like it dark, so I tend to turn off everything but the glowing light of my screen, which is also set to be dark.

    Do you think listening to music is useful when writing?

    Yes. This goes with removing other distractions. I tend to play very few songs in a rotation, ones I know well enough that I can tune them out. Generally, I have a small play list of songs that seem to fit a character and play it when its their scene. Any song with words is more likely to be distracting than those without

    Do you think any other kind of sound is useful when writing? (such as having a movie play in the background, or the chatter of people in a café etc.)

    Yes, I will accept white noise, no noise, and ambient noise. Even ASMR noise if its quiet. But no movies or chatter. I'd never go to a cafe. I don't even go when I don't want to write. Starbucks has nothing on me.

    Do you ever take inspiration, or become motivated, but visual elements during the writing process?

    All the time. I get inspired by movies, shows, music, current events, past events, life in general, other writing and on and on. Writing starts with a movie playing in my head and then I try to translate that to paper. I see just about every movie that comes out, and I am always looking for what went well, and what was complete bull***t. Most movies miss so much, miss their point, and give me bull***t, so I try to avoid that in my own writing.

    Do you consider the interface of your writing software to have any effect on your writing?

    Yes and no. I tend to write in notepad, and word. I have ywriter and scrivener. I use scrivener more cause I like its layout better, but I don't compose in it. I used to like word more when it was easier to change its color schemes, now its a pain, and it leaves too much white on the screen. If I being really old school, I preferred word perfect 5.1, but....those days are gone. I use notepad cause its no formatting and just text.

    I am not happy with computers though. Twice in the last year, I lost everything on my hard drive due to technical issues. One was the bios got fouled up and Bitlocker would not let me back in the drive...like WTF? I never set up bitlocker. Not happy. PITA. Fortunately, I know forensics and got it back. But PC's and SSD drives are not on my friends list at present.

    Do you think having a fitting environment to your writing subject is useful? (listening to western music while writing about cowboys, or having the lights turned off while writing a scary story etc.)

    Yes, I answered this above. I tend to find music that fits the mood. I don't feel a need to have a lot of other reference material anymore. I pretty much read them ad nauseum, and I know the period fairly well.

    Most important to me before writing, is I want to know no one is coming to ask me anything. So a writing space is important. I dont have a writing space. Its a problem.
     
  3. Info Gatherer

    Info Gatherer New Member

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    Thank you so much for your answers, its incredibly helpful.
     
  4. Ban

    Ban Troglodytic Trouvère Article Team

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    What, if any, environment do you personally consider to be the most conducive to your writing?

    In a dark but homely room on a cold night.

    Do you think listening to music is useful when writing?

    I often find a song that suits the ambience of a scene and play it on loop.

    Do you think any other kind of sound is useful when writing? (such as having a movie play in the background, or the chatter of people in a café etc.)

    I'm easily distracted by chatter, but natural or industrial sounds, if monotonous, work well for me. Think of the rustling of leaves when the winds are blowing.

    Do you ever take inspiration, or become motivated, [from/by] visual elements during the writing process?

    I'm wondering what your precise question is here. What sort of visual elements are you thinking of? I'm inspired by everything I see, read, hear and experience. In regards to my writing and worldbuilding process, I at times draw characters, settings, maps and so on during my writing, which serve as visual references.

    Do you consider the interface of your writing software to have any effect on your writing?

    Not so much. I have a few sets of fonts that I'm comfortable looking at for extended periods of time, but I'm not finnicky about software. I use libreoffice and microsoft word interchangeably. As long as the interface has a non-obtrusive design and primarily centers around a standard black and white colour scheme, I'm good.

    Do you think having a fitting environment to your writing subject is useful? (listening to western music while writing about cowboys, or having the lights turned off while writing a scary story etc.)

    To an extent, but the considerations listed above take precedence. Environmental factors mostly help in getting the writing process started in my opinion.
     
  5. skip.knox

    skip.knox toujours gai, archie Moderator

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    • What, if any, environment do you personally consider to be the most conducive to your writing?
    Screening out words. I can't deal with other words--people talking, songs with lyrics, movies playing--while I'm trying to create words myself. I used to write without music, but there are now ambient sounds from the rest of the household that I need to screen out so I don't respond to them. So, headsets and psybient, chill music.
    • Do you think listening to music is useful when writing?
    See above.
    • Do you think any other kind of sound is useful when writing? (such as having a movie play in the background, or the chatter of people in a café etc.)
    See above.
    • Do you ever take inspiration, or become motivated, but visual elements during the writing process?
    Not really, but I do find visual elements useful because I write alternate historical fiction. So I rely heavily on both illustrations and on contemporary photos. Especially valuable are old photos, with no automobiles or phone lines.
    • Do you consider the interface of your writing software to have any effect on your writing?
    Not really. I don't often use the screen-only function in Scrivener (or other software), as I find I frequently make use of the tools.
    • Do you think having a fitting environment to your writing subject is useful? (listening to western music while writing about cowboys, or having the lights turned off while writing a scary story etc.)
    Nope. Medieval and Renaissance music is mostly just annoying to me. Give me a good synth, any day.
     
  6. Mad Swede

    Mad Swede Inkling

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    What, if any, environment do you personally consider to be the most conducive to your writing?

    I sit in my "office" at home when I'm writing, mostly because my writing is a sort of second job and I feel that when I'm working at home I should work in a place dedictaed to work so that I separate work and pleasure. Although I enjoy writing, I feel I should treat it with respect.

    Do you think listening to music is useful when writing?

    Yes, sometimes. It depends what I am writing. I often use music to get me into the right frame of mind to write certain key scenes in a book.

    Do you think any other kind of sound is useful when writing? (such as having a movie play in the background, or the chatter of people in a café etc.)

    Not really, but then I have the ability to shut it out.

    Do you ever take inspiration, or become motivated, by visual elements during the writing process?

    Yes, often. Seeing the world around me quite often leads to ideas for scenes or events in my books. That doesn't mean that those ideas are appropriate to whatever I'm writing at the moment, but in that case I'll take a few minutes to write the scenes in my random text file for later use.

    Do you consider the interface of your writing software to have any effect on your writing?

    Yes. I am severely dyslexic so having the right software is essential to allow me to write. In my case that means specialised add-in tools for Microsoft Word, as similar tools aren't available for things like Scrivener.

    Do you think having a fitting environment to your writing subject is useful? (listening to western music while writing about cowboys, or having the lights turned off while writing a scary story etc.)

    See my earlier answer about using music to get into the right frame of mind.
     
  7. Ned Marcus

    Ned Marcus Inkling

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    Will you share the results of your project here?
     
  8. Demesnedenoir

    Demesnedenoir Istar

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  9. What, if any, environment do you personally consider to be the most conducive to your writing?

    For actual writing (that is, own to paper, fingers to keyboard), anywhere I can sit up straight and have stuff on a flat surface in front of me. If I get too comfy, I won't be productive, but if I get too academic, I'll get bored too easily. So I usually end up with the laptop in the living room recliner.

    For writing as in creating, that's any and everywhere. My job is very repetitive and I work by myself, so I can let part of my mind wander a lot. I've burned through too many audiobooks and podcasts to count and make good use of notepad apps on my phones when I have an idea or dialogue pop in my head.

    Do you think listening to music is useful when writing?

    No, I generally find it distracting.

    Do you think any other kind of sound is useful when writing? (such as having a movie play in the background, or the chatter of people in a café etc.)

    I absolutely need background noise to be productive.
    I usually have on a rerun of a show I know or a video game streamer so part of my brain is occupied but not enough that it takes me out of writing. It probably distracts me more than I realize, but 2 hours of 60% writing is still better than 1 hour of 100% writing and getting burned out.

    Do you ever take inspiration, or become motivated, by visual elements during the writing process?

    Externally? No. Internally, I very much tend to picture scenes as they are happening so that I can pause them for review. Sometimes that examination will lead to me changing something I just wrote.

    Do you consider the interface of your writing software to have any effect on your writing?

    I have tried many over the years, Docs, Word, Scrivener, Scribd, etc, and they don't seem to have a lasting impact. So now I just use Google Docs (despite it's inconsistent formatting) because it syncs between computer and phone.

    Do you think having a fitting environment to your writing subject is useful? (listening to western music while writing about cowboys, or having the lights turned off while writing a scary story etc.)

    No, I usually do the opposite, like having Futurama reruns when writing fantasy or a Skyrim playthrough when working on Slice of Life works. Otherwise, I find myself unconsciously copying the tone or style of what is on in the background, and that's disingenuous to my writing
     
  10. ThinkerX

    ThinkerX Myth Weaver

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    • What, if any, environment do you personally consider to be the most conducive to your writing?
    • Actual writing is in my haphazard office nest, with dictionaries and reference materials close at hand. That said, I do spend a lot of time elsewhere pondering plot points and worldbuilding issues.
    • Do you think listening to music is useful when writing?
    I prefer silence. It helps me focus on the issues at hand.
    • Do you think any other kind of sound is useful when writing? (such as having a movie play in the background, or the chatter of people in a café etc.)
    No, at least not for me.
    • Do you ever take inspiration, or become motivated, but visual elements during the writing process?
    Not while actually writing, The inspiration process, yes.
    • Do you consider the interface of your writing software to have any effect on your writing?
    I prefer a standard, neutral format that does not distract me from the actual writing.
    • Do you think having a fitting environment to your writing subject is useful? (listening to western music while writing about cowboys, or having the lights turned off while writing a scary story etc.)
    I regard those as more distracting than useful.
     

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