October 3, 2012

RTW: To Every Thing There Is a Season

Road Trip Wednesday is a 'Blog Carnival' where YA Highway's contributors post a weekly writing- or reading-related question that begs to be answered. In the comments, you can hop from destination to destination and get everybody's unique take on the topic.
Autumn from Four Seasons by
Alfons Mucha [Public domain],
via Wikimedia Commons

Today's topic is:
How does your writing (place, time, inspiration) change with the seasons?

Where I live in Canada we get four very distinct seasons, from decently hot summers to really chilly winters (but not always). Take the past couple of days, for instance. Monday: high summer temperatures; Tuesday: sweater and scarf weather and flurry warnings. Say what? Such is life in Western Canada. Winter mornings start out VERY dark and the sun sets before you head home from work. For me, that makes it challenging to feel motivated to do anything besides curl up with a blanket, a pot of tea, and a good book. Writing? Eh.

I first started working on my WiP in July of last year and with all of the extra daylight hours, I managed to get a lot done. I was up early with butt in chair and ready to write. This is especially weird given the fact that my story is set in the Dry Valleys of Antarctica primarily during the months and months of darkness. Art definitely not imitating life.

When we were in Scotland this past May it was grey and COLD. Between the squishy weather and the gorgeous surroundings I found myself plotting a whole new story idea. But when we came home to sunshine and warm temperatures, this story idea got filed away for another day. Now that it has started to get chilly and grey again, I find myself wanting to pull out that story and dive in. 

I'd be lying if I said that the seasons don't influence my writing. I'm revising that first WiP and have been working on another at the same time that takes place by the ocean in summer. I can already feel myself becoming less inspired by the day as the weather here turns crummy. And that's when other forms of inspiration become important—music and pictures I've somehow attached to that particular story.

How about you? Do you find that your writing inspiration and/or routines are affected by the seasons?


27 comments:

  1. Though I'm only 5 hours away (and was only 2 when I lived in Ohio), I've never been to Canada, but in my mind, it's buried in snow during all winter. hehe And it's totally understandable if that affects your inspiration. It would probably affect mine too.
    But I don't think my writing and I change with seasons. So boring, I know lol

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The funny thing is, many places in Canada don't get all that much snow in winter. On the west coast (around Vancouver) they get mostly rain in the winter and seldom snow. Last winter we had really mild temperatures and hardly any snow all winter. I'd say we had less snow than many of the northern American states! :) The bigger problem is the darkness until around 8am and after 5pm. O_o Not a fan of that.

      Delete
  2. I once added rain to a story because I was writing it while it was grey and pouring outside. A lot of times the seasons do influence my writing, although I do happen to be writing a story set in space, so that isn't too much of a problem there. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's funny, I've never actually included the current weather in the story that I'm writing. That's probably a good thing when I'm writing a summer story and it's snowing like crazy here. :)

      Delete
  3. I guess you'll just have to make a return trip to Scotland so you can work on that story idea. Yeah, it would be *such* a sacrifice, but you've gotta do what you've gotta do! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Darn. That's such a terrible idea, Colin. I mean, why would you even suggest it? :P

      I would love to move to Inverness for a couple of reasons, mainly because it's beautiful but because my story idea is set not far from there. If only hubby would allow me to twist his arm enough to do so. :)

      Delete
  4. See, I kind of love the dark and the gloomy for my writing! I wish it was that at least a little here. But no, sunshine almost all the time! I do love finding out how different writers are :-)

    My response: http://wordsareinnermusic.blogspot.com/2012/10/road-trip-wednesday-autumn-writing.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I like writing in the summer because of the increase in daylight hours, but I actually don't love the sun. That sounds weird, but I prefer grey and even rainy days. I don't like the pitch black that we're plagued with until late-ish in the morning and early at night. O_o I like hearing about other writers' preferences too. :)

      Delete
  5. I love colder weather and darker days! I stay in more so and I'm more productive whether it's reading, writing, editing, or plotting. When the warm weather comes I'm out of hibernation and I want to enjoy the sunshine and go out on day trips. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I like the coolness of fall days and grey/rainy days too. I just don't love the pitch black that we have until later in the morning and early at night in the winter. Bleh. Grey summer days are pretty much my ideal--longer daylight hours, but not blazing hot sunlight. :)

      Delete
  6. I find it so hard to work both in summer and the dead of winter. Fall and spring are good times for me, so I try to maximize the amount of time I can devote to writing then. (Done a bad job of that lately, though.)
    Dark until 8 am? That's really late!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Let's just go ahead and officially declare fall the best season EVER. I like longer daylight hours (our days are so short in winter) and I like the grey of fall days. There's something about rainy days that is perfect for reading and/or writing. :)

      Delete
  7. I'm definitely the most productive in the fall and way less during the summer. If we get any nice weather at all here in Alberta I try to cherish it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I always say every spring that I'm going to spend more time outside in the summer, because Alberta has such yucky winters, and then I never seem to. I like taking advantage of the longer days to get stuff done, which makes winter that much less productive. I suppose there are more distractions in the summer, though. :)

      Delete
  8. Changes in season really throw me off, but then I'm easily distracted. My WIP is fairly dark in atmosphere so if I'm writing during the day I actually close the blinds to simulate night. Weird, I know. I'm turning into the wacky recluse lady. I guess with winter quickly approaching and darkness settling in much earlier it'll suit my story and work habits better.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Fortunately for me the season doesn't affect the actual story that I'm working on a whole bunch. My summer ocean-side story is getting a little less appealing as the weather gets more grey, but I think I can still manage. :)

      Delete
  9. Your post makes me realize that I've never written a seasonally driven book. Sure, I'll add some atmosphere to it depending on the times of the year it's set, but I've never written something that revolves around one season.

    I do think the lack of daylight would get to me too, regardless of the book's setting.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I suppose I didn't really think about it when I started writing my one summer book, but it just totally fit the story. One thing I don't tend to do is write holidays into my stories.

      The shorter days in the winter are definitely a bummer.

      Delete
  10. Totally agree about weather inspiring books. I want to write something that takes place in the fall when the leaves are orange and gold and red and lovely. And I'm totally intrigued by your new idea. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. In all of the days leading up to Halloween this month, I know that I'm going to want to work on something a little spookier. Ah well. Doesn't really fit the story ideas that I have. :) The new idea is a YA Historical/Time Travel type novel a la Diana Gabaldon's OUTLANDER without all of the smut.

      Delete
  11. Like you title! I can see location, especially a location like Scotland, fllling you with ideas. I am glad you continued on your WIP. It's so important to finish what you begin.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! (re: title) :D I have about 5-10 different story ideas and it's killing me to work on only the two that I've started. I want to give them the time that they deserve, and yet I so badly want to move on to shiny new projects as well. :)

      Delete
  12. I wrote my dark, chilly story this spring, for some reason, but I usually follow the seasons in my writing, too. :)

    ReplyDelete
  13. The colder and dreary the weather, the more writing I get done. BUT when the sun shines and I'm running around outside, that's when most of my story ideas are born.

    ReplyDelete
  14. It's hard to keep a vision of the summer in mind when there are flurry warnings! The extra sunlight hours make it easier to get more work done for sure. Now, since the days are getting shorter, it's still dark when I wake up, and my brain tries to convince me to just go back to sleep. So tempting!

    ReplyDelete
  15. Antarctica! That sounds so picturesque! I grew up in the 'gateway to Antarctica' so would love to read a book set there! Sounds awesome! What part of Western Canada are you from? Awesome post, as always!

    ReplyDelete
  16. I've noticed that I get more writing done in the colder months. I think it's because I'm spending more time at home since it's gross out. You don't feel bad about spending the whole day indoors at your desk!

    ReplyDelete

I ♥ comments. They make me smile.☺