RB: What I Can’t Write Without

I’m on a short break from writing since I completed the first draft of Lucas’s Story and the second set of edits of Callie’s Story. So I thought I’d take the time to give thanks for what helped me reach this moment in my life.

* * *

I used to think all I needed to write was paper and an always-sharpened pencil.

I was a complete idiot.

Sure, I could finish a novel from start to finish with a notebook and my favorite pencil. If I wanted to take twenty years. These days, I like to move a bit faster.

Dropbox: For me, this cloud application is a must. I can easily toggle in between computers during the writing and editing phase without worrying about reading the wrong edition or dealing with flash drives.

Kindle: In between the first draft and the first round of edits, I like to read my novel from start to finish. In the Before-Kindle days, I had to constantly stop myself from editing while I read in Word. Now when I use my Paperwhite, I don’t have to worry about it.

iPod: This one came as a shock to me. I’m the one in the house who’s always lowering the volume level of the television or pounding on Bubble’s door screaming the parental cliché, “Turn down that music!” For me silence is absolutely wonderful, except when I’m writing. With my book’s soundtrack pouring through the earbuds, words just flow from my fingertips.

In looking at the above list, I see my dream to escape to a deserted island and write with abandon is completely unfeasible.

…unless I change that dream to include electrical outlets.

What about you? What do you need to breathe life into your writing?

Related links:

http://litreactor.com/columns/9-modern-tools-every-writer-should-use

http://profwritingosu.wordpress.com/2011/11/10/six-essential-tools-no-writer-can-live-without/

http://flavorwire.com/410384/the-writing-tools-of-20-famous-authors/

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36 thoughts on “RB: What I Can’t Write Without

  1. To breathe life into my writing I blow on it. What? You didn’t see that coming?
    On a serious note, I take my characters out on a play date and watch what they do with my writer’s eye.
    Thank you for Liking my latest post “Is It Okay If I Pat My Cat?” Good luck to you two sisters. My book is about sisters of a different kind but sisters just the same. A sister is a friend for life. Lorlinda

  2. Hey! Thanks for linking my Dropbox post. That’s definately something that I swear by now. And free?! Get serious. No excuses. Get thee there now. What else…Scrivener is a must for me now. When they release the iPad version, you may never see me again. Oh, the iPad. Yes yes yes! I do all of my blogging from the WordPress app on my iPad. Speaking of…Feedly is the must have blog reader app (and I will add this blog to it as soon as I’m done here). I also love my Awesome Note app. It works along with Evernote, so all my ideas get saved on every device (I just have to remember that they exist).

    I’m sure I missed something. I’ve turned into the tech junkie I never wanted to be. Before you know it, I’ll be attended sci-fi conferences and debating the moral implications of time travel.

  3. I can’t listen to music while writing – it drowns out the voices in my head 🙂 And i probably couldn’t live on a desert island without my WiFi, although there are definitely days I’d happily give it a go…

  4. Hmmm, these are interesting tools! I’ve never thought of reading my own novels on my Kindle but I do like that idea of approaching them as a reader and trying to have a more distant (and less subjective) perspective. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  5. I’m curious what your ‘soundtrack’ is when writing…. Once when I painted a huge mural (30 feet x 12 feet – I’m an artist, too) I was up on a huge scaffolding and couldn’t keep going up and down to change the CD. (Okay, this was a few years ago!) so I set the player on repeat. After hearing ‘Earthsuit’ for eight hours, it became my ‘go to’ recording for creativity.

    • I pick out songs that remind me of my characters or of the plot of the story. The same thing happens to me after I listen to it for a while; as soon as I hear a song inspiration starts to flow whether I’m in front of the computer or not. 🙂 -RB

    • Ella uses it. She loves it. I write on two different computers, one at work and one at home. It wouldn’t be beneficial for me to use Scrivener right now. But once I’m down to only using one computer, I will be buying it. 🙂 -RB

  6. Another completely different set of writing “helpers”. Aren’t we a diverse bunch! I can listen to music while editing or doing social media, but as soon as I need to write “properly”, it needs my undivided attention.

    And yes, that desert island would have to have broadband for me to be marooned happily 🙂

    • I love writing early in the morning, too. The house is so quiet and still. That’s when the words just pour out if me. Unfortunately it isn’t always possible. I have to take those moments when I can. -RB

  7. I love to listen to music whilst writing. I became used to working around the chaos of family life, so silence was rare. My netbook has served me loyally whilst travelling, but I have just discovered the joy of a Samsung note 8″. I still love paper and pens but need technology for manuscripts and research – oh and music 🙂 Happy writing!

  8. Interesting that you mention music. I love music and until now had a very hard time to write with music playing in the background. Since I write in two languages I have recently discovered that music either in English/American or French helped me to switch from one language to another. So, yes, music can help to unleash words.
    Fun blog you have, BTW.

    • It’s interesting that music helps you switch languages. I can’t imagine trying to write stories in two different languages, probably because I only speak one. Lol. Thanks for stopping by and commenting! -RB

  9. Music and headphones are a must for me. I concentrate more with a set of headphones on my head for some strange reason. Also a locked door. 😀 It’s the only way I don’t get distracted by other people and get some writing done.

  10. Well I still use pen and paper. On times I write pieces of my story on the go.
    Mp3 player is there but only if i need to completely filter everything else out. BUt also still have a phone so no need for both
    I still do not use dropbox. it is still online and i need to install more on my device. Ooh i am old fashioned..
    ha ha.. but there you go.

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