Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Weather's impact on Writing

Have you ever felt "Today is the perfect day to write, I just feel it in my bones"?
If you have, what has the weather been like? Summer sunshine? Snowy winter? Cloudy? Stormy? Rainy?
The weather has actually already been proven to have an impact on people's moods. So I would say it does also affect our mood to write.

In Scandinavia, where I grew up, we have three summer months and between five and six winter months. These winter months are dark and extremely cold; we have about four hours of sunlight every day and about 20 degrees minus, mostly with heeps of snow that doesn't disappear until late April.

Sounds fun?
Not really.

My point is, it has been proven that these dark months greatly affect our mood. During these months, we are one of the most depressed people on Earth. We have even given it a name: "winter depression". So imagine how happy the Swedish people are during our few summer months.

Pretty darn happy.

Nothing can depress us during the summer - not even rain - because in the summers the sun hardly ever disappears.

That's right people - we have midnight sun.

Where I come from, the sun disappears maybe at 10pm, but if you stay up, you'll see it rise again at about 2am. Up in the northern part of Sweden, it doesn't even set. Ever. For three whole months.

So what has this to do with writing?

Well, first of all, I just wanted to make you aware of the seasons in Sweden. But second, I wanted to point out that seasons affect our mood. Even our mood to write.
Today I woke up at 5am by the howling wind outside the window and the rain that threw itself against it, and I just knew, right then, that I would face a writing-day. When the weather is bad and you have no intention of going out whatsoever, it becomes a writing day. I mean, when the sun is out, you want to go out and enjoy it while it lasts. Maybe that's just me, being from Sweden.

Anyway. I'm going to write as much as I can today. It's storm outside (where did the summer weather disappear to?!), and I admit that I haven't been writing that much lately. Nanowrimo had me write 50.000 words in one month, but since then I've only managed about 40.000 - in 4 months. At least I'm finished soon! 10.000 to go!

*typing away*

Tuesday, 3 April 2012

The importance of reading

I must admit that when it comes to reading, I'm very picky. If something doesn't already have good reviews, I'm not probable to pick it up. As a writer, I know, this is NOT good. I wish I wasn't so picky. I know that reading is very important when it comes to honing one's writing skills. You read something good to learn how to apply successful techniques, and you read something bad to learn what techniques you should avoid.


And with that in mind, I have recently forced myself to read whatever I can get my hands on. With my limited student budget, I refrain from buying anything unless I know I will love the novel, but I'm using the university library as well as borrow from friends, and this has turned out to be a good thing. Not only have I read things that significantly differ from my own writing preferences, but I have come to realise that I am a hell of a fast reader! I've never really thought about it before, but after I finished the trilogy of the Hunger Games in less than three days, my friend pointed out, and I quote: "How fast do you read?!"

Right now, I'm in the middle of the ten-novels-long series A Princess' Diaries (which seriously annoys me, I might add, although I've always loved the film adaptation), and I have borrowed Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice from the library, seeing as I have yet to read that classic.

Do you have any recommendations? 
Whatever you recommend, I will read it! (I might even write reviews of them here on the blog!)

So keep writing and reading, folks!