Great title! Great article! Man, we wish this had been written exclusively for us:
by Susan K. Perry
What makes words flow? Some authors and poets swear by a highly particular writing ritual. Others swear they don’t do anything special to get to that place where the words begin pouring forth.
Some time back I questioned, in depth, a large number of novelists and poets (76 in all). Nearly all had won awards for their writing or were bestselling authors. When they described their creative process to me, most mentioned some sort of routine.
Not all writers concede that their routine is vital or important, or even that it matters all that much. Some, though, are aware that the activities they pursue pre-writing do matter. I suspect that the majority of the rest do what they do so routinely that their “rituals” are no longer on a conscious level.
The particulars of a writer’s rituals may be perceived as somewhat fetish-like. Whatever has worked in the past will work every time, right? Mustn’t deviate. Habits become entrenched, writing happens, and before you know it, you’re in flow.