Wednesday, October 6, 2010

In Defense of #2

Okay, first of all, get your head out of the toilet. I'm not talking about THAT kind of #2!

I'm talking about these.



My trusty pencils.

Somehow I think differently when I write with a pencil. I don't look at things the same way on a computer screen or even when I write with a pen. I love the scratch of graphite on paper, the softness of the slightly smudgy words. I connect to my story in a way that is hard to explain, but it's almost more primal.

Whenever I get stuck or overwhelmed or I just need a different frame of reference, I reach for a pencil and a stack of 4x6 note cards. And as I scribble, I learn more about my characters, their needs and the actions they have to follow to make the story come alive.

What tricks do you use make your words flow again?

17 comments:

Indigo said...

I'm the same way, I write it out on paper. However, I use a pen - a Pilot G-2 fine point to be specific. Something about the smooth movement and elegant script gets the words going. (That and having broken both of my wrist once upon a time. Easier to write with a gel.)(Hugs)Indigo

Kelly said...

I have notebooks of poems, ideas, story starters written in pen and pencil, but mostly pencil. I love the feel of a sharpened pencil. Unfortunately we have about twenty unsharpened pencils in my desk drawer right now! How do they all get broken and no one sharpens them again?! :)

Laura Pauling said...

It definitely helps me to grab a notebook and a pencil or take a small nap and let my mind work out the problems while I'm half asleep half awake.

Quinn said...

I just can't do anything with pencils. I hate them. The smearing is the worst. I do everything with pen -- my writing and my art. Scratch outs kinda bother me, but not nearly as much as smearing.

jennifer.harrell.scott said...

I know exactly what you mean!!

Music is another "trick" I use. I have certain playlists I listen to specifically when I need to get a good flow going ;)

www.jenniferharrellscott.blogspot.com

Elle Strauss said...

I can't read my writing anymore, so that doesn't help me :)

lotusgirl said...

I don't usually go to pencil, but I will often go to a pen. I think differently when I write than when I type. Sometimes I wish I had a manual typewriter so I could write that way sometimes.

Carolyn V. said...

I stop and read blogs. Then I seem to always want to write some more. =)

Sarah Laurenson said...

I don't do pencil. Never have liked it. Getting graphite all over my hands. Too light writing. I like bold, dark strokes.

Always did the crosswords in pen, but only because I hate pencils.

Susan R. Mills said...

I hand write nearly every scene before typing it into a Word doc. I use a pen, though. Otherwise, I'd be constantly erasing and would never get anywhere!

Shannon O'Donnell said...

I sit down and brainstorm with my husband. He's brilliant. I can never write fast enough to keep track of all the new ideas that come from him.

Krispy said...

I haven't written in pencil in a LONG time. I think there's something to writing things out long hand, but most of the time, I'm just too frustrated with the speed. Haha.

Stina Lindenblatt said...

LOL. By NOT using a pen or pencil. I'm a computer girl all the way, which is why I have trouble when I have to do writing assignments at conferences (like in LA).

Sharon K. Mayhew said...

I start most stories, poems and ideas with a pen (and it has to be a special one) and a composition notebook or one of my little notebooks that I carry everywhere....

I start most chapters on paper. I may finish them on the computer, but they almost always start on paper. I'm glad to hear I'm not the only person who writes out things before they make them to the computer...

Kristin said...

Spiral notebooks and a pencil. For some reason, they don't seem as intimidating to me.

Dawn Simon said...

Sometimes I write with pencil and paper, and sometimes I switch locations if I feel I need to get the words flowing again. Usually I move from the desk chair to a soft chair or the den to the kitchen table since I like working best from home. But last week it helped me to move to a quiet coffee shop. Funny since I assumed I wouldn't like it--I think I make faces when I write, and I like to read certain parts out loud. The new location was just what I needed--though I kept weird facial expressions to a minimum and didn't read anything out loud!

nick said...

Tricks? Exercise and getting up early, though not necessarily in that order.

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