The desk where I do all my writing is in the corner of my room, and right beside it sits my treadmill. Sometimes, when writer's block strikes, I give myself an ultimatum: either produce a paragraph in the next fifteen minutes, or hop on the treadmill for thirty. It's a good incentive, right? But it doesn't always work. So, I put on my sneakers and headphones and go for a walk.
I need to have music when I walk. It takes my mind off the fact that I'm staring at a wall AND expending a lot of energy without actually going anywhere. More than that, it gets my blood pumping and puts a little strut in my step. It can change my mood.
I've identified at least five different writing moods. Each has its own soundtrack. Maybe you can identify with these:
Mood #1: Inspiration/Starting a New Story
Prescribed Songs: Wind it Up by Gwen Stefani ; Who are You by The Who (for developing character profiles); Stir it Up by Bob Marley; Galileo by the Indigo Girls ("Look what I had to overcome from my last life/I think I'll write a book")
Mood #2: Cranking it Out/Making Daily Word Counts
Prescribed Songs: Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen; I Don't Wanna Be In Love by Good Charlotte; The Hard Way by Mary Chapin Carpenter ("Show a little inspiration/Show a little spark")
Mood #3: Waiting (Contest Results, Responses to Agent & Editor Queries)
Prescribed Songs: Hanging by a Moment by Lifehouse; The Waiting by Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers
Mood #4: Rejection
Prescribed Songs: Poor, Poor Pitiful Me by Terri Clark; Don't Let Me Get Me by Pink ("Never win first place/I don't support the team/I can't take direction/My socks are never clean"); The First Cut is the Deepest by Sheryl Crow
Mood #5: Celebration
What else? Party Like a Rock Star by Shop Boyz
Got a song you can recommend for any of these moods? I'd love to hear your suggestions because some of the above are pretty close to being played out. I'm not going to say which category. :)