It’s been a crazy week of writing and then not writing; a real mixed bag of things have been happening here, but even if you’re not sitting diligently at your desk or wherever it is that you write, it doesn’t mean that you’re not working–if you’re doing something that relates directly to your writing, that is.
If you’re surfing the web, don’t just sit there playing games; use the time to do some background research, whether it be on a current work in progress or a future project. If, however your work in progress happens to involve online gameplaying, you’ve got it made!
If you’re reading a book, then it’s bound to be about something that interests you and is therefore a valuable source of information to help you in your writing. The more you read, the better your writing will become.
Movies and TV are another essential tool to the writer; they impart information that you did not have before you started viewing. For instance, just think about how much you have learned about forensic science simply by watching shows such as CSI: Crime Scene Investigation. Not much use if your work in progress is a high fantasy epic, i know, but i think you get the point.
Whatever we do when we are not writing, we are still learning and remembering pieces of information that sooner or later will be of use to us. We just don’t know it at the time! I’ve spent lots of time pushing a shopping cart around the supermarket while thinking of possible names for characters and plotlines. My mind is always on the go, but to onlookers, i’m probably just “vegging out” as i perform what lots of people consider to be a boring task.
Admittedly, there are times when i do genuinely “veg out” and i can’t think of a single thing to say or to write, but those times are getting fewer the more that i read and write, and i’m going to make the effort to do more, because the ideas just keep on coming, and i don’t like to disappoint my readers! Or myself!