It's pretty well known in the writing world that authors basically have habits or "musts" when they sit down to write. Some people need just the right music. Others have to have a special item. Some people need to be wrapped in a cocoon of silence.
Recently, I've been trying to identify what habits help my creativity. I've tried playlists but music is usually only helpful if I need to block out a bunch of background noise. Then the music is there but I've basically zoned out. If it's already silent though I don't need music unless there's something else bothering/distracting me.
To be honest, it's been so long since I've lost myself in my writing that it's pretty discouraging. The words just aren't flowing at all. I know there's a bunch of things I WANT to do but I don't know if any of them are really conducive to my creative process.
I WANT to outline but I find myself only able to outline to a certain degree.
I WANT to just write the novel but I'm afraid that it'll turn out horrible if I don't outline it.
I WANT to have a playlist for my novel but I can't find anything that really helps or matches my novel's mood.
I WANT to write but nothing is flowing right now so I find myself trying to get out of it but working on other projects. Or reading... because, you know, I'm behind again...
I've been trying to strip all of these wants away and letting myself just write and see what happens. I keep telling myself this all takes however long it's going to take. Nothing is going to speed this process along. And it's this moment in time that I find this article on the great J.R.R. Tolkien both inspirational and scary.