As I mentioned in my post on motivation last week, I’m head-down in writing mode, working to finish up my manuscript so I can get the coveted “PRO” sticker on my badge for the upcoming RWA National conference. I have about seven days left (depending on when you read this) and four scenes that need to be finalized. That’s a fair amount of work and not a lot of time to do it in.
So naturally, I’m watching a lot of television.
Okay, watching may be too strong a word. Especially since I have the sound turned off. It’s more like there’s a really big, moving photograph off to the side that I glance at from time to time when I’m trying to think of a word or to figure out what remaining clue my hero needs to uncover before he finally puts it all together. It tends to block out other distractions, yet lets me feel like I’m not locked away in solitary (writing) confinement.
That’s not weird, right?
“I must say I find television very educational. The minute somebody turns it on, I go to the library and read a good book.” ~ Groucho Marx
Everyone has their own writing routine – whether it’s a special writing spot, a soundtrack or playlist, or maybe a specific writing time. After a great deal of trial and error my routine has turned out to involve late nights, good coffee, and a random television show playing in the background. It has helped me add 10,000 words in the last two weeks, so I’m not going to knock it. This past writing weekend owes its success, in no small part, to Pride and Prejudice (thanks Michaeline), Perfect Match (courtesy of the Hallmark channel), and a season or so of Death in Paradise (Yay! Netflix).
I tend to go with shows/movies that I’ve already seen, that way I don’t have to worry that when I periodically look up I’m going to become engrossed and end up watching to find out what happens next. My shows-of-choice are usually light British crime dramas. I initially watched Midsomer Murders to get a feel for English country village life. I moved on to Inspector Morse and Inspector Lewis, when I was trying to understand how to weave clues and false leads into a mystery story, and added Broadchurch (the UK version) for David Tennant’s accent (ok, for the mystery too). I learned a lot about story when I watched them all the first time around and now they make good writing backgrounds.
“The most corrosive piece of technology that I’ve ever seen is called television – but then, again, television, at its best, is magnificent.” ~ Steve Jobs
Tonight, the Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries are “helping” me with this post, but that brings me to my current problem: my well of shows is beginning to run dry. Even though I’m not actually “watching” the shows, there are limits to the repeat cycle (long limits, but limits nonetheless).
So, any suggestions for enjoyable shows/movies that would provide a good “background” on subsequent viewings? Preferably something in the light mystery, comedy, or romance area. My Netflix queue awaits.