I used to need complete silence to write. No music, no TV, no chatty neighbors in the apartment upstairs. Just me, and the air, and the words.
Then I started trying to fast-draft, to move through my first draft at the rate of 1000+ words a day, which was an unheard-of pace for me. In order to do that, I had to get out of my head a little bit. Find a way to turn my inner editor off and just let the words come, judgment-free.
Two things helped me do that: a timer, and NOISE.
If I'm listening to music when I'm writing, it takes me everso slightly out of my critical brain - apparently I can't concentrate both on writing and self-editing and listening to the music. Combine that with a timer and a word count goal and I'm good to go.
Is it great writing? Nope, but it's certainly edit-able. When I wrote with my critical brain on high alert, my writing was definitely better the first time out. It was also taking FOR.EV.ER. And I'd spend hours agonizing over scenes that might not even make it to the final cut. Good writing, but completely inefficient process.
So I've traded quiet for quick, and it works for me. What about you? What's your process look like?
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