Monday, May 16, 2011

What Do Balance And Atmosphere Have To Do With Each Other?

Balance is the most important part of the life of a writer. Each writer must find a balance that works for them. Most of us have to consider family, novel writing, blog entries, commitments and job. Besides all that, a million other little things intrude upon our already bulging daily schedules. We must be able to fulfill each task then remain calm enough to separate ourselves (our minds) from every other demand and become engrossed in our work as writers. That's balance.

How do we do it? By creating an atmosphere. How do you set up your perfect atmosphere for writing? Just as each unique writer has their own style of writing, each author has their own way of creating their perfect atmosphere.

Me? first, I like to accomplish any task required of me for the day by making a list the night before or first thing in the morning. The action of checking off each task gives me a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction. Once I've done all I can from my list, I save what I can't do that day for the next. Having it written down, I don't have to think about the list for the rest of the day. With that off my mind, I move on to my next step. Music.

I love to have the room to myself, the windows open (weather permitting), and to play movie soundtracks. The music wells up within me evoking an emotion which helps me get into the world and minds of my characters. I also listen to the soundtracks while I think about the story and during the editing process.

I find that movie soundtracks relax my mind. Why movie soundtracks? I can't explain it, I just know they do the trick. If you're curious, you may want to try one sometime. Let me know if it works for you. Here are a few of my favorites:

James Horner: Braveheart and A Beautiful Mind
John Williams: The Patriot
John Barry: My Life, Out Of Africa, Dances With Wolves, and Somewhere In Time

So, what do balance and atmosphere have to do with each other? Everything. I'm certain it can be done, but believe it would be difficult to have the perfect atmosphere for writing without having first established balance.

What about you? I'd love to read about your plan for balance and writing. I'd also love to know what musical genre you listen to, and what other little habits you may have that help get your writing juices flowing.


  1. Cool photo, Mary! Nice that music works for you, and I can see how it does. I've never been able to write with music going on in the background though; I can't multitask that much. LOL I can't hear the rhythm of the words as easily.

    Have a great week!

  2. Carol,
    At least you tried. It's like the no-thank-you helping. You try a bite of something you never had before to see if you like it or not. If not, you never have to eat it again. If you like it, you're set for life!