After what happened to me last week I feel the need to talk about the dangers of the post writing daze and offer some advice to others on how to handle this fragile creative state.
I have also been wondering how many accidents, slip ups, calamities, disasters, boo boos, costly mistakes, wrong turns, poor decisions and catastrophes have occurred as a result of some post writing dazes.
To give you an example of the post writing daze here is an account of what took place on Friday to a certain blonde writer…
Friday. I am on a two-hour train journey with my daughters. Whilst they watch a movie I decide to do some writing. An hour later and I am deep into my third draft. Words are pouring out of me and I am so engrossed, the hot drinks and confectionary trolley goes by without me LOOKING UP! #loveatrainsnack
Just as I reach a good bit in The List of Unspeakable Things (my current project) we pull into the station. This is where the kids and I need to get on another train for the second part of our journey.
When I pre booked the train tickets some months before I didn’t think about us having to do a ten minute dash (with cases) across a large station to change trains. I also didn’t think about the possibility of performing this amazing commuter feat, whilst being in a post writing daze.
I stagger off the train in a zombie like state. Seriously my eyes are glazed, my mouth is moving, but sadly no sound is coming out (similar to a fish in a bowl) and I am doing a floaty sort of walk. The problem here is that inside my head my writer brain is still switched on. In a hurry I forgot to turn off the switch. Cue – the post writing daze!
Oh my days, I don’t remember anything about that dash across Manchester Piccadilly station, I was somewhere else in my head. We get to the platform and in a post writing daze I board the train which is waiting there. Once the doors have shut and the train has left the station I wake up and realise we are on the WRONG train. We are going to Preston and not Leeds!
Oh my goodness cue panic, emotional break down and cold sweat! My post writing daze cost me an extra £30 (tickets from Preston to Leeds) and added an extra hour onto our hot and uncomfortable journey.
The kids wanted someone to blame so in true writer fashion I blamed my main character Violet for distracting me. *Sigh*
Post writing dazes can lead to all sorts of trouble.
After a weekend of intense reflection (and feeling £30 lighter) I have come up with some handy tips on how to avoid the post writing daze and if you are unlucky enough to find yourself in one, some ideas on how to survive it:
- Make sure you give yourself adequate time to come back to reality after a writing session. You can’t just snap out of writing a good bit on the eighth chapter of a third draft.
- Take extra care when planning travel journeys. Give yourself sufficient time between connecting trains and flights to wake up!
- When leaving the fictional world remember to turn your writer brain off. Make a point of flicking that switch!
- If you are in a post writing daze and things don’t go to plan, you can always blame your characters.
Be careful out there, writers!