My writer friends and I often talk about the tools we’ve discovered to actually help us put words on a page. Those tools range everything from hardware to software, pens to moleskine journals, settings to environments, snacks to libations. I’ve decided to sing the praises of a few of my writing tools here in a series of posts.
In earlier posts I’ve shared the computer hardware and software that powers my writing endeavors, and a few of the old-school reference books and resources I turn to as I write. Today I want to share some of my favorite accoutrements. Good thing I mentioned dictionaries last time. You may want to look accoutrements up.
My wife bought me a Mr. Coffee desktop coffee warmer. Best gift you could buy a coffee drinking writer, I tell you. Perhaps it has happened to you–you sit down at the keyboard and hit a stroke of inspiration only to realize fifteen minutes later your cup of joe is ice cold. This thing is the bomb!
I dig scents when I write. Nothing like the smell of a good strong cup of coffee. But what about those late night occasions when you don’t really want the coffee/caffeine thing? For me, it’s a simple fragrant candle (citrus, ocean and holiday scents are my favorites) or even a stick of mild incense (woodsy or earthy, my tastes).
You’ll always find a cheap legal pad next to me. I do all of my writing on my Macbook, but I’m also always wanting to jot stuff down, perhaps a page or paragraph notation so I can come back to something later, or a reminder about something that crosses my mind when I’m not ready to act on it at that moment. These aren’t notes I keep. I fill the page, cross items off as they’re no longer needed, and then crumple it up and start fresh the next time.
Even though I do all my writing on a computer, I occasionally like to print out segments and edit by hand. I’m old-school that way. Nothing like blue pencils for editing. Gotta have ’em.
Tunes are important to me, too. I’ve always got my iPod nearby, or simply play from iTunes on my Mac. I have a small desktop speaker system on hand, so I can plug in and adjust volume and EQ however I want it. I dig just about every kind of music, so depending on what I’m working on and what sort of mood I’m in, it could be anything. My playlists are mad diverse.
And I also always have a dish of Sweet-Tarts on hand. Sugar. The blue ones–you know we’ll be eating those one day in heaven, so get used to them now.
How about you? Any accoutrements you can offer up that help get your creative juices flowing?