Some of my best – not exactly best I suppose, useful is a better word – ideas have come while showering. Never anything new, no grand notions of new worlds to forge and fresh characters to spin into being. But showers have pointed me in the right direction when I’m stuck in a scene-rut, fresh perspective often just arriving with the kneading splatter of water on my shoulders and the pleasant heat or cool, depending on the season. A perfect line to sum up a situation, an additional devastating outcome that will shatter a poor character’s existence just that little bit more. Both and more have been the result of habitual cleanliness. One particular shower saw an old story idea freshened up, a single small, but important alteration ensuring I could immediately start work on it again
Perhaps I should try writing in the bath, like Douglas Adams did. If a shower helps keep a story chugging along, full immersion should see epics penned in record time. Just need a way to waterproof the laptop.
Are there any other useful tools, aside from water, that you find assist with the writing process? Not inspiration as such. Something that helps you keep the story going in a good direction while drawing on previously obtained inspiration and work you have already done. Pacing or stroking a pet, or doing something else habitual, perhaps. While partaking in such fundamental activities, it might be that the mind is more free to wander and contemplate your possibilities than when sitting, stock-still and frustrated, before a computer screen, trying to focus.
Admiring narwhals and attempting to summarise their magnificence in poetry may be another such story-enhancing, semi-habitual practice. The narwhal selkies shall eventually surface, this I know. I had originally thought to introduce them during NaNoWriMo. But I wasn’t sure justice would be done by them. Best they bide their time. Wait until they’re ready.