Really. I sat down to edit and I don’t wanna. It’s like a mountain of laundry. I’m the worst at laundry. So bad that I’m not allowed to wash anything. Here’s what happens when I sort: “These are all clothes. In they go!” I get stuck with folding and putting everything away.
I’m very habit driven. I took an online class on Beethoven’s sonatas and I couldn’t focus unless I had a gin and tonic in front of me. Because, tonic… Anyone? And they’re delicious. I’m even worse when I write. I sit in the same place and write on an iPad. Which I do not recommend. Yet I do, despite having a laptop six feet away. I’ve got a strict beverage routine. It’s so ridiculous. I start with a coffee mug of espresso. Once it’s burned its way through me, I drink a very specific type of water that I’m always afraid will be discontinued until it’s cocktail hour. That’s misleading. It’s not just an hour and it’s not like a pre dinner sort of event. Cocktail hour is the hour that I’m no longer required to drive anywhere and can justify doing nothing for the rest of the day. Not gonna lie, on the weekends it’s as early as 11. But whenever the hour arrives, I drink Trenta Gin and Tonics (because I think a Starbucks Trenta cup is a fabulous vehicle for a cocktail) or wine (sweet red or moscato) until it’s time to switch back to water. I don’t eat well when I write, I think it slows me down. Sound familiar?
The most crucial part of my routine is music. It started as a way to drown out the sounds of The Bawdy Household. Mr. Bawdy Book Writer is gregarious and loud. He makes me laugh every day. It’s why I love him but it’s hard to focus when he’s around. And lord, does he whip the Bawdy Babies into a frenzy. Last night, it was him and Offspring #3 singing “Don’t stop me now/Mr. Fahrenheit” by Queen followed by a giant plastic candy cane fight (candy canes courtesy of MY Christmas tree). Heathens. So… Headphones.
I used to listen to classical music. Tchaikovsky is my homeboy and obviously Beethoven. But it got to be too distracting. I get too caught up in it and start anticipating movements. So, I switched to contemporary music. I play the same song over and over so I’m not distracted by song changes. I pick something that fits the mood of the book or a character. “Be Still” by The Killers was a huge inspiration for Elise. I get goosebumps when listen to it now. I alternated between “Holocene” by Bon Iver and “Cosmic Love” by Florence and the Machine through Book 2. Now, I’m distracting myself with the song for Book 3. The more that book takes shape in my mind, the more irritated I get. I really need to take a break but the closer I get to finishing Book 2, the more Book 3 starts scratching at my brain. I think it will be a little darker and have more action. Alastair is like a gin and tonic, smooth and sharp but he’s got this dark side and he’s a little scary. If you have any suggestions, I’d love to hear them!