Borrowed from the Man Repeller article over here. With some bonus and much related quotes from the original post below.
Where do you do most of your writing?
At my desk — specifically at my desktop. When we moved to our villa in 2016, I had envisioned a different set up, but now, I love my little nook at the top of the stairs. My desk has plenty of cute debris, including, but not limited to: a framed photo of a tattoo design I wrote into one of my books (and also have), a Baymax desk lamp, a USB powered fan, a tiny pot of Rosy Lips Vaseline, my quarter edited manuscript, no less than three notebooks, among other things.
What do you love to wear most when writing?
This is a super weird question (that seems weirdly specific to female authors), but fine — anything that’s comfortable. In the Middle East, it’s always warm, so I’m probably wearing shots and a t-shirt most of the time (no socks).
What are you most specific about when doing creative work?
This is the original answer, but it so resonated with me, I thought I would publish it in its entirety.
The most important thing is that I feel alone, undisturbed. I used to say yes to lunches because they seem so quick and easy — an hour lunch and then back to work! But I can’t do them anymore. No matter how early I wake, I wake with the knowledge than in three hours, four hours, five hours I’ll have to get ready and leave the house. Then the day is bisected. I’m very indulgent and protective of my headspace; sometimes even a late dinner has to be canceled because I need the ability to leave my writing headspace exactly when I want to. Sometimes that happens at 8:16 p.m. but an 8 o’ clock dinner means getting ready at 7:00 p.m. It must sound so neurotic, but that’s how I am. I need a lot of time to be alone with my thoughts, as it often takes a long time for them to become interesting.
Regarding above, this situation plays into my absolutely requiring one day a week where I will not leave the house (even for groceries). These are the days of the week where I get the most accomplished. Something about the lack of interruption allows my brain to go through projects without pressure or anxiety. Of course, in the past, I’ve been able to write almost anywhere, but now, to truly focus, I need my SPACE. For example, this week, I am hyper guarding Tuesday, because the rest of the week will be busy (and mess with my work flow). It’s not that I won’t get work done in these days, but my best work will definitely be Monday or Tuesday, which I am fiercely protective of.
What’s something that used to challenge you, but doesn’t anymore? What challenges you now?
Ironically, I think I’ve gone in reverse order. I used to not have any trouble with motivation to finish projects and now I seem to struggle. My motivation is never with the actual practice of writing (I have ideas for days…some that I might not get to for some years yet), but more with the finalization of a project. *coughs politely* I have five novels and a novella that are waiting to be published. Yes, two of them will get published (The Queen 2 & 3), but the other three? I genuinely feel bad for them. Will I ever find the inclination to dust these projects off and release them? I have no idea. What will it take for me to simply move on and get to a final draft? I wish I knew. Is it something I’m going to have to figure out for myself? You bet.
Are you of the write-every-day or write-when-it-strikes ilk?
Write every day, as I have done almost every day for at least the past ten years. Or, to be more honest, do something with writing every day. Whether a blog post, a rough draft, or editing a manuscript, I’m pretty much involved with writing six days a week.
Best piece of writing advice you ever heard?
Put it away for awhile. I love On Writing by Stephen King. Although I had never formally thought of the process, when I read the book and the advice to ‘stick it in a drawer’ I thought ‘yes, exactly.’ As an author, I need space — room for the book to grow and for me to find distance. It’s only then I can write myself notes like, ‘Is this where we want to start?’ and ‘Why does this not come as a shock to everyone?’ or ‘Not enough dialogue or action. Start over.’