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Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Z: zzzzzzzzzzzzz

Do writing ideas keep anyone else up at night?

For several years I have had this idea rolling around in my head but I could never get it to click into the story I wanted it to be. So I left it stewing in the back of my brain while I worked on other writing projects. Then, this last summer, It clicked. I sat down at my computer and wrote for a week straight. I mean, almost literally, one week straight. I slept for 2-4 hours a night and got up to get back to work typing. I had to get it down, and put together, and finished.

Sometimes I'll pop out of bed in the middle of the night knowing exactly how to get my character out of the situation I left him/her in several hours before. Sometimes I just keep typing and forget to go to bed until I look at the clock and it's 3:30 in the morning. Writing steals my sleep time. Even when I say I'm going to get to bed early, and even when I claim I'm going to sleep for a full 8 hours, the author inside me scoffs, "yeah right!"

Ergo, sleep is one of the many sacrifices we make to get our stories out.

But sometimes we get refunded sleep also. When I sent my last manuscript off, and didn't know what to do with myself, I took a week off and relaxed, slept, and read. It was fantastic!
And when I finished writing that novel in one week, I basically slept for 2-3 days after it was done.

So yes, we are tired and groggy and maybe half our story ideas come from our semi-conscious, delusional  sleep deprived state. But it's a sacrifice most of us are willing to make.... I think :)

And now that I have reached Letter Z and fully completed this challenge .... I'm going to go take a nap!


  1. Oh man, Rebecca. I don't work like that. I sometimes wake up early with ideas but I never go without sleep. At least six and half hours a night or I am useless.

  2. Congratulations! If you can work well on sleep depravity, you'll make a great mom. ;) It's been fun going through the alphabet with you! Can't wait to see what your next post brings.

  3. My "best" ideas always pop into my brain right as I'm about to fall asleep... then, of course, I can't actually fall asleep until they've been tended to (or at least jotted down somewhere... hopefully in a place/fashion I'll be able to find/read come morning)

    Congrats on finishing the A-Z!

  4. Time to rest!! Congrats on finishing the a-z!

  5. When I'm in bed, I'm asleep. If I have a good idea, it tends to keep until I get to the computer. But we all work differently...

  6. I know what you mean! I write best at night when the sun has gone down, the house is silent, and no one can disturb me while I am writing. Many nights I only sleep a few hours if I sleep at all. I completely understand!

    Congrats on finished the challenge!!!! :)


Thank you for your comments!