In the Right Mood

I always wonder how other people's brains think. I can only know the inner workings and crazy ramblings of my own and I think it'd be fun to brain hop one day and see how other brains work. For instance when I write, I have to be in the right mood that fits what I'm writing. To give an example...

When I write Cimmerian City, or any variant in the series, I usually have to put on Blade Runner, Blade I or II, the Underworld series or Resident Evil Apocalypse because it's a dystopic science fiction suspense thriller (with possible bits of horror thrown in).

Right now I'm about to go over my Alloria story, so I tossed on First Knight. Sometimes I watch Dune or the Lord of the Rings.

Even soundtracks help get me in the mood because I can write certain scenes that play like movies in my head. The Eye of Alloria's entire story can be told with Loreena McKennitt's Book of Secrets album down to the last scene with Dante's Prayer playing in the background.

I have a cinematic mind where I see characters act out like in a movie and I'm basically just a bystander recording their actions, words and thoughts. It's kinda crazy if you think about it. I hear some writers have to block out their story and characters in an outline beforehand so they can go ahead and write within that context. I tried that a few times but then I told the whole story and I lost the will to write it, sadly. I have to write the story out straight from my head where I become the reader/viewer watching the story unfold in a spontaneous fashion. I love the "high" as I write!

I saw an article once in script magazine about wakeful living through wakeful writing. I'll touch a little bit on this and then maybe write about it a little more at the Amira Press blog on myspace.

Some of you may have heard of Richard Linklater's Waking Life rotoscoped animated film. While I can't tell you exactly what the film's about, I can tell you it is the visual representation of films being personal dream-visions (thank you Mr. Lynch! :-D). Although the writer of the article was talking about scripts and screenwriters, I think it can also apply to novel & short story writers as well.

A quote reads: " ...each [script] is a series of dreams, recollected in ecstasy, tranquility or terror. Sometimes, as we dream, we relive a certain life event or minor moment. Other times, as we dream, we visit a hallucinogenic, nonsensical stratosphere that, when we wake, we find the jaunt has shaken us to the bone. Screenplays can be a mixture of these two types of dreams--a synthesis between reality and fantasy."

And I think that best describes how my particular writing process plays out.