Setting the Mood (doesn’t that sound sexy?)
(Sorry I’m late. Life is kicking my butt right now. But I finally got part 11 up! I don’t know if I’ve said this before, but if anyone has a topic they want me to cover to just let me know.)
Everything thing has (or should have) a “mood”. People behave differently at the beach, work, the mall, church, and so on. Having an appropriate atmosphere helps people decide the expected behavior in each setting. Sandy beaches help people to relax and wear underwear without shame (okay, that’s a bit of a joke. But, really, swimwear is an acceptable form of mild nudity. Kind of interesting if you think about it, but I’m getting off topic). An white-walled office with a desk, computer, and chair makes people focus and social correct and polite.
Surprise, surprise, writing follows the same concept.
When you’re writing your story, set the “mood” around you to fit the story you’re writing. Some writers have a room they decorate to fit the genre of book they usually write. Some—like George R. R. Martin—have a separate house for writing. Now, most of us want-to-be authors can’t afford that, but there are still ways we can creating a writing space for ourselves and a “mood” for our stories.
First: find a writing place. Try to write in the same place every time and try not to do anything else in that space. That will train your brain that this is where you write, where you creative juices flow.
I like to write in my bedroom, legs crossed, and in the middle of my bed. I can see out the window and into the little woods behind my house. My room is also the most private place I have access to. I can lock the door or tape up a little sign that says: “writing: please don’t disturb”. Or something. Anyways, it creates a calm environment where I easily slip into “writing mode”. Ideally, I would write outside. However, it rains too much, and the weather changes would prevent me from writing 6 months a year . I will, however, often plot and develop characters and worlds outside.
For your own personal writing place, I suggest a room with decorations that might help inspire your story (my room looks like a combination of a forest, an Elvish palace, with a bit of Native American flare, or like I’m a world traveler (which, sadly, isn’t true), which works well since I usually write fantasy). If you don’t have an appropriate room, a) find a room where you can find peace and quiet to write for long periods of interrupted time or b) find a room with virtually no decorations. Why? Because if it isn’t going to help set the mood, don’t let it become a detriment to it either.
For example, when I lived in Michigan (Go Lions!) my brother had a crazy bedroom. He had one bright red and two bright blue walls accompanied with one checker-patterned wall. As a little boy, he loved it. He also went to public school while I was homeschooled, which meant he gone while I was home. I shared a room with my homeschooled sister, so his room was often empty and mine wasn’t. I could have written in his room, but the decorations would have been a destructive to my story’s mood.
So, find a non-detrimental, quiet place to write. Or, if you have the room (and money), create one with an atmosphere to make your story(its).
Part two (I guess?): setting the stories mood.
Another simple, easy way to set the story’s mood is music. Please, please, please create a playlist for your story. Listen to music the people in your story might like, or what might get played in your story’s soundtrack if it ever became a movie. You’d be surprised how much this helps you.
What if you don’t have the music?
Well, Youtube is your best friend. Create a playlist there. Or use a website like Pandora and tailor it to your stories mood.
What is your stories mood? Well, that’s an entirely different idea. I won’t go into that here.
As always, I’m happy to answer questions.
Once again, you can pre-order Iron & Glass now!
Oh, yeah, Iron & Glass has a playlist. It’s 838 songs! (crazy, right?) I might go ahead and post some of it on here later. Let me know if that would interest anyone.