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What's your writing process? Do you write without thought or not?

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I have always wanted to ask other writers this question because I think its weird that I don't think about anything when I write, I just sit down and it comes out of me like tears or vomit (depending on who you talk to). Also I can't seem to figure out how to put my avatar up on this site. If your'e into Eric Northman at all check out my new story "The Distant Blue". Well sound in if you want, if this topic has been done to death I'm sorry but I didn't know.

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I have dialogues going on in my head some days,and other days, it's just spilling out from some nameless void within. It doesn't seem to matter, though. As long as I can write, it's all good.

Now as to the other things you've mentioned, I'll be a mod for a moment as opposed to an author.

The avatar needs to be hosted on a website like Photobucket or Gravatar. As far as I know, we are no longer able to use uploaded photos. Photobucket is free however and works find for me. Simply use the handy link they provide and paste it into the custom photo url field.

You can promote your story in this thread, appropriately enough called Promote a Story! This way more people will see it, and possibly read it. :D

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I think of myself as an organic writer. It always starts with a fantasy my mind concocts on its own. Then the basic plot develops around the fantasy and that is when I start writing. I like to let the story develop from there as I write it.

for example in the transformers story I'm writing now I wrote two sex scenes for Jack and Arcee and I had not intended to write another sex scene between them for quite some time, but while working on chapter #3, which I am doing now, A sex scenes just wrote itself into the chapter. It is a bit of a pain in the ass because this chapter is supposed to be mainly about the birth of Jack & Arcee’s child and not to menschen that it is making the chapter longer than I had intended. But the scene fits. I think it is better not to try to have too much of the story planed out because you will try to force the story to fit into that plan and the story WILL come out feeling like it was forced.

Instead let the story flow and grow organically and not only will your readers enjoy it more; you will enjoy writing it more as well.

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It depends on what I am writing. I like to do both. Free association writing feels really good, cathartic (my favorite word). Planning writing can be just as satisfying, but for me at least the free association writing tends to lead to the planning. A lot of my stuff originals and fanfictions started off as my imagination bleeding all over whatever I could get my hands on to write with, then as I wanted to develop them into more serious works they started getting more planned. My fanfiction Spiel Mir Mir (Inuyasha) is a planned fic, whereas the first chapter of my fanfic Training (Inuyasha) was free association writing. My creative switch is always pressed to overdrive, so I feel satisfied with writing no matter which route I take.

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I very rarely plan out anything; plans go awry so easily. About the most I ever have of a plan is, "I want to include this as a scene," or "I want it to end like this" - it makes for a very chaotic story, but personally I think that just makes the entire thing more entertaining. Especially when the characters in my head start having conversations of their own and insisting things be included. *facepalm* They've done that to me a lot recently; made for a bet and flirting in one story and had everyone looking askance and thinking, "Did they really just...?" And of course the answer was yes, they did really just. I'm still not sure why, precisely, but it's going to make for a wonderfully hilarious ending. And one of a whole three things in that story that are planned, period.

On the other hand, too much free reign to a story can make things evolve out of proportion. I started a Final Fantasy VII fic as a gift for a friend on another site, and all she asked of me was to start out with "It was a rainy night in Midgar" and to use a specific pairing. Well, in relatively short order it turned into a series (or should I say three?) and the pairing turned into a threesome. Granted, she gave her permission or I wouldn't have let it get that far, but this is the kind of thing that happens to me. *shakes head* The third in the series was inspired by a Christmas parody that came into my head and was mentioned in the first, right at the beginning.

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I have dialogues going on in my head some days,and other days, it's just spilling out from some nameless void within. It doesn't seem to matter, though. As long as I can write, it's all good.

Now as to the other things you've mentioned, I'll be a mod for a moment as opposed to an author.

The avatar needs to be hosted on a website like Photobucket or Gravatar. As far as I know, we are no longer able to use uploaded photos. Photobucket is free however and works find for me. Simply use the handy link they provide and paste it into the custom photo url field.

You can promote your story in this thread, appropriately enough called Promote a Story! This way more people will see it, and possibly read it. :D

Hey thanks. That's how I feel about my work too, I will post my story in that thread too. Is it uncouciosus writing if you do it without thought? Is that considered stream of conciousness?

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I very rarely plan out anything; plans go awry so easily. About the most I ever have of a plan is, "I want to include this as a scene," or "I want it to end like this" - it makes for a very chaotic story, but personally I think that just makes the entire thing more entertaining. Especially when the characters in my head start having conversations of their own and insisting things be included. *facepalm* They've done that to me a lot recently; made for a bet and flirting in one story and had everyone looking askance and thinking, "Did they really just...?" And of course the answer was yes, they did really just. I'm still not sure why, precisely, but it's going to make for a wonderfully hilarious ending. And one of a whole three things in that story that are planned, period.

On the other hand, too much free reign to a story can make things evolve out of proportion. I started a Final Fantasy VII fic as a gift for a friend on another site, and all she asked of me was to start out with "It was a rainy night in Midgar" and to use a specific pairing. Well, in relatively short order it turned into a series (or should I say three?) and the pairing turned into a threesome. Granted, she gave her permission or I wouldn't have let it get that far, but this is the kind of thing that happens to me. *shakes head* The third in the series was inspired by a Christmas parody that came into my head and was mentioned in the first, right at the beginning.

Yeah I know what you mean. My characters take on a life of thier own, I get totally obssesed with a story sometimes like the current one I'm working on. It's more real to me than my own life. I love that I never know what will happen next and somehow most things make sense in the end. I try not to read really great books anymore because it sometimes makes me feel despondant that I will never be as good as so and so. Thank you for sounding in about this!

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It depends on what I am writing. I like to do both. Free association writing feels really good, cathartic (my favorite word). Planning writing can be just as satisfying, but for me at least the free association writing tends to lead to the planning. A lot of my stuff originals and fanfictions started off as my imagination bleeding all over whatever I could get my hands on to write with, then as I wanted to develop them into more serious works they started getting more planned. My fanfiction Spiel Mir Mir (Inuyasha) is a planned fic, whereas the first chapter of my fanfic Training (Inuyasha) was free association writing. My creative switch is always pressed to overdrive, so I feel satisfied with writing no matter which route I take.

Yeah I think that's what I do (free association, I guess). Cathartic is an excellent word. I am incapble of planning anything beyond a coming event in the story. I have been writing in the same fandom for years and sometimes it gets really frustrating because my readers won't read anything I write outside of it. Oh well, me too, when a story starts really flowing I get completly consumed by it. Thanks for replying!

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I think of myself as an organic writer. It always starts with a fantasy my mind concocts on its own. Then the basic plot develops around the fantasy and that is when I start writing. I like to let the story develop from there as I write it.

for example in the transformers story I'm writing now I wrote two sex scenes for Jack and Arcee and I had not intended to write another sex scene between them for quite some time, but while working on chapter #3, which I am doing now, A sex scenes just wrote itself into the chapter. It is a bit of a pain in the ass because this chapter is supposed to be mainly about the birth of Jack & Arcee’s child and not to menschen that it is making the chapter longer than I had intended. But the scene fits. I think it is better not to try to have too much of the story planed out because you will try to force the story to fit into that plan and the story WILL come out feeling like it was forced.

Instead let the story flow and grow organically and not only will your readers enjoy it more; you will enjoy writing it more as well.

That's my philosphy too. My readers get mad when I don't do the happy ending that they want, but fuck it, you have to be happy with your work, if you write things that you want to read than it will usually be something you can be proud of. Thank you for this rather thoughtful reply.

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Yeah I know what you mean. My characters take on a life of thier own, I get totally obssesed with a story sometimes like the current one I'm working on. It's more real to me than my own life. I love that I never know what will happen next and somehow most things make sense in the end. I try not to read really great books anymore because it sometimes makes me feel despondant that I will never be as good as so and so. Thank you for sounding in about this!

I have a blast when writing, simply because the characters take on a life of their own and I get to see their interactions in my head - almost like a movie, but usually against a black screen. (Usually. Depends on if there's a place I have in mind or if they opt for certain surroundings.) The downside to having characters take on a life of their own, of course, is that, when they're arguing with each other about something they want written, I can't get them to shut up. And they dont. Go. Away. I have to wait until they're done or come up with a compromise. Kind of a hassle. And a major headache.

I, on the other hand, can't stand to not read good books, because I'm too much of a grammar Nazi and a plot-hound. (I looove convoluted plots and long stories, and a touch - or more - of the dark is just wonderful as seasoning. ;) )

And of course you're welcome. :) It's always fun to discuss writing with other writers; we bounce around the most interesting tips and commentary, and often make strange remarks that no one but another author would understand.

That's my philosphy too. My readers get mad when I don't do the happy ending that they want, but fuck it, you have to be happy with your work, if you write things that you want to read than it will usually be something you can be proud of. Thank you for this rather thoughtful reply.

Seconded! I love my readers, too, but sometimes a bittersweet ending is best - or even just a depressing or resolved one. It really depends on the story. It's fine and good to make the readers happy, but if the author isn't proud of or at least satisfied with his/her work, something needs to be scrapped and redone. Readers who demand happy endings all the time aren't the kind that will buy another copy when the first one is worn out. Nor are they the kind who will think, "Hey, this story was so good, maybe there are other awesome stories by this person!" and check out an author's page or profile. A reader worth keeping will keep coming back. (And usually forgive the author for taking time to update, and really care if life suddenly has puppies all over your lap.)

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Is it uncouciosus writing if you do it without thought? Is that considered stream of conciousness?

I think stream of consciousness as a style refers to the style of writing where you literally record your thoughts without attempting to instill order or conform to normal rules of grammar. Sort of like when you;re thinking to yourself and something totally unrelated pops in before you return to your original train of thought. Kerouac might be an example of that sort of narrative flow, or even James Joyce. It's actually not a bad technique to add some drama with a good internal monologue in that form, and it can make a character really come to life.

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I have a blast when writing, simply because the characters take on a life of their own and I get to see their interactions in my head - almost like a movie, but usually against a black screen. (Usually. Depends on if there's a place I have in mind or if they opt for certain surroundings.) The downside to having characters take on a life of their own, of course, is that, when they're arguing with each other about something they want written, I can't get them to shut up. And they dont. Go. Away. I have to wait until they're done or come up with a compromise. Kind of a hassle. And a major headache.

I didn't know how to get the mutli quote to work so here is my reply. I have the greatest time in my life writing and I know what you mean, my characters completly take over my life. I don't do surroundings that much so I get that black screen comment. Some part of me knows just what they would say in a given sitituation, they are my best friends, I don't have a lot of friends in real life, so... I think I like you.

I, on the other hand, can't stand to not read good books, because I'm too much of a grammar Nazi and a plot-hound. (I looove convoluted plots and long stories, and a touch - or more - of the dark is just wonderful as seasoning. ;) )

And of course you're welcome. :) It's always fun to discuss writing with other writers; we bounce around the most interesting tips and commentary, and often make strange remarks that no one but another author would understand.

Seconded! I love my readers, too, but sometimes a bittersweet ending is best - or even just a depressing or resolved one. It really depends on the story. It's fine and good to make the readers happy, but if the author isn't proud of or at least satisfied with his/her work, something needs to be scrapped and redone. Readers who demand happy endings all the time aren't the kind that will buy another copy when the first one is worn out. Nor are they the kind who will think, "Hey, this story was so good, maybe there are other awesome stories by this person!" and check out an author's page or profile. A reader worth keeping will keep coming back. (And usually forgive the author for taking time to update, and really care if life suddenly has puppies all over your lap.)

Yeah I write on FF.net and I recently had to blast my readers and tell them what's up, I wrote a chapter for them just to satisfiy them and felt like a fucking whore doing it. I have very loyal readers but the occasional bitch will blast me and I get pissy but I shouldn't because one of my readers recently told me that its a compliment that they get so worked up about my work. Oh btw I love to read good books too, its just lately I haven't felt like it and I do get depressed when I read a good book at times, well not a good book but an excellent book that is. I'm very picky about them, ever since I started getting good at writing I've been that way. I don't work so I update a lot but I have a tendency to drop stories like hot potaotes. Sorry about the spelling errors in this post but my spell check doesnt' work on this site.

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I think stream of consciousness as a style refers to the style of writing where you literally record your thoughts without attempting to instill order or conform to normal rules of grammar. Sort of like when you;re thinking to yourself and something totally unrelated pops in before you return to your original train of thought. Kerouac might be an example of that sort of narrative flow, or even James Joyce. It's actually not a bad technique to add some drama with a good internal monologue in that form, and it can make a character really come to life.

Yeah I sort of knew that but what is it called when you put no planning into what you write? Love Kerouac but hate James Joyce. Dubliners was so incohernent. Sorry it took me so long to reply to this, I've been busy.

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Yeah I sort of knew that but what is it called when you put no planning into what you write? Love Kerouac but hate James Joyce. Dubliners was so incohernent. Sorry it took me so long to reply to this, I've been busy.

I've seen it called automatic writing (not in the occult sense) or spontaneous writing. Kerouac is also associated with spontaneous writing.

And Dubliners are incoherent due to proximity to the Guinness brewery... :D Which sort of explains more than a few of my friends and family. :lol:

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I've seen it called automatic writing (not in the occult sense) or spontaneous writing. Kerouac is also associated with spontaneous writing.

And Dubliners are incoherent due to proximity to the Guinness brewery... :D Which sort of explains more than a few of my friends and family. :lol:

Yeah I've read everything from Kerouac. I loved Desperation Angels. On the road is my least favorite but its still good. I also love Burroughs's "Place of Dead Roads" Lol at the Dubliners comment. So you're Irish?

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Yeah I've read everything from Kerouac. I loved Desperation Angels. On the road is my least favorite but its still good. I also love Burroughs's "Place of Dead Roads" Lol at the Dubliners comment. So you're Irish?

I'm mostly Irish. The rest is Swedish, which leads to an occasional desire to pillage myself. And drink mead. ;)

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Usually I have some sorta plan when I write. I've thought the most important parts of the dialogue, the locale, the characters, the general feeling. It's like I've watched a movie and all I have to do is describe it. At points, I wish I had the budget to shoot movies, because I could play with camera angles, something that's incredibly hard to write.

There are things I don't intend to happen, it happens, and I work it out. I refine dialogue. I think of better things, of extra scenes, and I just write the crap out of it. Sometimes it's totally out of the blue... and at times, I honestly don't like it. It messes with the images that I already have in my head and it may totally fuck my own ideas up - that kills it for me. So I end up rethinking everything, reimagining scenes, actions and so on. At other times, it flows perfectly, and I'm proud of how things turn out.

So even if I do think when I write... I reach automatic mode eventually. It works. Lately, however, I've been overthinking things and as a result, I can't seem to write anything. I'm trying to fix that though... once again *sigh*.

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Yeah I write on FF.net and I recently had to blast my readers and tell them what's up, I wrote a chapter for them just to satisfiy them and felt like a fucking whore doing it. I have very loyal readers but the occasional bitch will blast me and I get pissy but I shouldn't because one of my readers recently told me that its a compliment that they get so worked up about my work. Oh btw I love to read good books too, its just lately I haven't felt like it and I do get depressed when I read a good book at times, well not a good book but an excellent book that is. I'm very picky about them, ever since I started getting good at writing I've been that way. I don't work so I update a lot but I have a tendency to drop stories like hot potaotes. Sorry about the spelling errors in this post but my spell check doesnt' work on this site.

I think I like you too! ( :rofl: Love the way you phrased it, so I had to reuse it!) And it's always nice to find people who understand what I mean when I talk about the characters I play with. Some people just don't understand, and then things get awkward.

I...can't write like that, period. For one, the characters won't cooperate with me, and for another, if I'm not satisfied with the work, I won't post it. Occasionally I have to scrap and rewrite entire scenes because the characters are doing something in a later scene that totally clashes. As much as I love my readers - especially the ones who review! - I never write solely to please them.

And yes, it is a compliment that they get so worked up about your works...but. At the same time, I've seen so many readers - usually also fellow writers - who have utter faith in the authors whose works they follow, so I don't much appreciate the readers who demand that a story go a certain way. I'd rather chat with the fellow authors who are reading my works - and whose works I am reading - and enjoy the stories as they go. I've found stories that are so well written that I adore them, regardless of sad endings, regardless of the disasters that happen - hell, I beta for one wonderful lady on FFnet (Clara Barton, who writes Gundam Wing fan fiction) and...well, she and I like to play sounding board - and sometimes we include another great writer, snowdragonct.

The sounding board thing is quite helpful, especially with someone who isn't going to steal ideas. (Clara and I like to see what other authors do with the ideas we have, as opposed to what we actually had in mind. Although when I play sounding board for her, often enough we think so much alike it's amazing. Though the truly amazing thing is that she can hand me what she has in mind and I can usually find a way to make it all fit together. Which is the best part about being/having a sounding board. Seeing it all come together, in the story or before, is a wonderful feeling.)

Well, I can't really say I understand your problem with the books - probably because my avid reading was very much encouraged by my family as I was growing up, to the point where my grandma and I used to have my grandpa's favorite novel memorized and could recite it paragraph by paragraph...and did. So although I often spot bits editors missed catching in novels, I try not let it get to me - and it makes me even pickier about my own writing.

I can't say I update a lot, because I'm looking for a job and trying to have a life and I have a boyfriend. And I almost never drop a story. So far, I think I've dropped a grand total of one. I just have a bunch going at any one time, so they take forever to update.

No problem; I miss spelling mistakes and suchlike now and then too.

Usually I have some sorta plan when I write. I've thought the most important parts of the dialogue, the locale, the characters, the general feeling. It's like I've watched a movie and all I have to do is describe it. At points, I wish I had the budget to shoot movies, because I could play with camera angles, something that's incredibly hard to write.

There are things I don't intend to happen, it happens, and I work it out. I refine dialogue. I think of better things, of extra scenes, and I just write the crap out of it. Sometimes it's totally out of the blue... and at times, I honestly don't like it. It messes with the images that I already have in my head and it may totally fuck my own ideas up - that kills it for me. So I end up rethinking everything, reimagining scenes, actions and so on. At other times, it flows perfectly, and I'm proud of how things turn out.

So even if I do think when I write... I reach automatic mode eventually. It works. Lately, however, I've been overthinking things and as a result, I can't seem to write anything. I'm trying to fix that though... once again *sigh*.

I hope you get past that soon! And that the problem doesn't happen again for a while.

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I'm mostly Irish. The rest is Swedish, which leads to an occasional desire to pillage myself. And drink mead. ;)

I have a litte bit of Irish but I'm moslty German. Lol, at the pillage commet. You're screen name is familair do I know you from somewhere?

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I mostly think my stories through... but sometimes I write whatever as it comes to mind. xD

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With very short fics, yeah, I tend to just free write. You know like with word prompts. I have been putting a lot more effort into my stories. I'd like to think it's because I've become a better writer, but it's probably because of my phone's notebook function. I can write literally anywhere I want and not have to try to hold that thought.

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I push myself away from writing down the ideas I get until it gets to the point where it's literally physically hurting me to not let these ideas out. That is when I consider an idea ripe to write.

Once the idea has been unleashed, I write incessantly, non-stop, without thinking. It is only when the idea begins to tamper out, that all the days and weeks of thoughts begin to run sparse and the highly-detailed points become thin, do I sit back and look through what I had written.

It is at this point that I begin to flesh the story out. The world it takes place in, its history, political inclinations, culture and creed. Then I flesh out the main characters in the same way - personal history, social status, base personality traits, defining characteristics (physically, emotionally, personally), opinions and beliefs, things like that. After the main characters comes the secondary characters (those who are not the protagonist but are prominent characters) with the same development, and then finally the support throw-away characters who are given little more than a name, general build, and general personality type.

I do not really outline things; I have a basic idea of main events, and discuss them with some confidants to solidify them. I do, however, outline all of the background information - it's not uncommon for me to create appendices with all of the history of people and places and mythos that are around 10 pages long.

I am a world-builder. The most enjoyment I get is from building complex, fleshed-out worlds. The next level of enjoyment comes from creating unique characters. Then comes fitting those characters into the world and defining the symbiotic relationship between world and characters, and characters to other characters. The least enjoyable part for me is describing present-tense motion, or the actual linear story. That's the hardest part for me.

So do I just sit down and write, without much of a plan? Sort of. I often write without an outline or a draft or anything like that to steer my path, but I sit down with general ideas in my mind that I want to strive toward.

Of course, I am also a proponent of the concept of "surrender yourself to your writing," where you effectively take a back seat once the seed has been planted, and allow the story to progress in whichever way it wants to go. I can sit back and sort of trim it when it starts to wander too far off the path I had planned for it, but I give the story plenty of wiggle-room. It is my belief that if you want a story to feel organic, then you have to let it be organic; you have to let it grow and find its own path through the rings and hurdles you, as the author, set up for it. That's my personal belief.

Edited by LordAardvark

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