Thursday, March 01, 2007

Anchoring Yourself

First of all, a bit of good news - Rumble on the Bayou is a finalist in the Single Title category of the Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence Contest. Winners will be announced at their conference March 31st, so we have a bit of a wait until we know, but hey, two contest finals in two months! Yea!

Anchoring is a term that is sometimes used to create a writing habit. For instance, I wrote so much in cafes in the beginning that now I can't be in a breakfast joint without wanting to write. As soon as I enter one, my mind switches over to the creative side. The problem with that is I'm not always in a cafe when I need to write. And sometimes I need to write at night and sometimes the places need to close. :)

So I've been thinking about anchoring and I think I'm going to try something new. I'm going to try anchoring myself to an object and not a place. Maybe I'll wear the same shirt when I write (not sure on that one since it would require regular laundry doings) or maybe buy one special coffee mug that I only use when I write. Or maybe I have my muse in form of a stuffed animal that I place next to me when I want to write - that one ought to really amuse people in public places.

Anyway, you get the idea. I'm going to think on it and come up with something that easily portable and works at any time of day or night in any place, home or public. I'll let you know how it goes.

So do you have a writing anchor? If so, what is it?


Tori Lennox said...

I don't have an anchor and I really need one, I think. Maybe I could use my little stuffed dragon... He can perch just about anywhere. :)

Kimber An said...

Never really thought about it, but I guess maybe I do. I wake up in the morning, usually around the ungodly hour of 4:30, flip on the computer and make coffee while it warms up. Then, I write.

Kelly Parra said...

Woo-hoo on the final, Jana!! That's awesome!

omigosh, I wish I had an anchor, then I could just write and not move, just WRITE.

haha! No anchor here!

Wendy Roberts said...

My anchor used to be light a large pillar candle beside my computer whenever I sat down to write. That anchor was retired after I nearly set fire to my computer (it's still a little smoked out). Sooo let me know what you come up with :)

Jana DeLeon said...

tori - I like the stuffed dragon idea. It sounds cute!

kimber - that would probably be more of a routine than an anchoring, unless you always use the same coffee mug or sit in the same place, same chair, etc.

kelly - thanks for the congrats! And go looking for that anchor so you don't float away - especially around release time. :)

ROFLOL, Wendy! OMG that is too funny. Note to self: no pyrotechnics in the anchor.

Katherine E. Hazen said...

I have one that's worked really well for me. A couple years ago my boyfriend bought me a really beautiful pen and mechanical pencil set. They're gorgeous silver with a pattern on the top. I got into the habit of using them to write. Then you just keep the pen in your purse when you leave the house. Bingo, you have an anchor and it's one you can use anywhere. Just make sure it's a pen you buy refills for. :D

Jana DeLeon said...

Katherine - that's a lovely gift and definitely scores points for your boyfriend, but I would die if I had to write longhand. Right now, I have regular cpu, laptop, DANA and one of those old NEC purse sized computers so that I can maximize performance everywhere I go. I also have absolutely horrid handwriting and type over a hundred words a minute.

I DO have a special pen I use for booksignings and contract signings. There's a small group of writers that started together and we've bought them for each other as we've sold. It's a great tradition.

Thanks for your idea, though. I've just got to figure out something that is computer and travel friendly without being too much maintenance.

Sassy Sistah said...

Congratulations, Jana! Keeping my fingers crossed for a win! But you're a winner with me, either way!

As for an anchor, I've found that straight grain alcohol works well - until I fall out of the chair, of course. (Kidding!) Seriously, I do have certain happy pants and comfy shirt that I like to wear when I write - all comfort all the time - that's my anchor.

Cari Manderscheid said...

Suzanne Brockmann did a segment on anchoring one time and she uses her laptop to anchor hersef. She only uses her laptop to write and nothing else. No surfing. No games. No journaling. Only writing on her WIP. So everytime she boots the laptop up, she's ready to start writing. Maybe you could try the same thing with your new NEC???

An Austin DesignWorks Production