Plot and Mood Writing

You guys may have heard that it is not necessary to write a story in order, especially a long one. If you have an idea for the ending first, there is no harm setting it down just to get it out of your system. And especially when you are in a particularly extreme mood, like I am and probably will be for the next few years, it is a good idea to capitalise on it to write out the scene that fits this mood best.

Personally, I find it easiest to write when I am in a moderately good mood. Not too extreme on either end of the spectrum, basically. When I am too excited I cannot focus my thoughts on anything else aside from my current situation. When I am too upset, well, it’s the same result. The best mood to be is contemplative. It works best to be as close to the environment and atmosphere that you want to depict in your story as possible. So if you want to write about a pretty pleasant scenario, sit close to the window on a sunny day.

Of course, when I am in my pleasant mood I can write pretty much any scene very effectively. However, if I am in one of my unusual moods, I simply cannot write in any other mood. And hence the only mood I can write in is the current one, or something close to it. Right now I can probably depict a murder scene well, or one where the protagonist does nothing but stares at a blank wall. Or something angsty like doing drugs. It might be different for you, so think about how your current mood reflects on your writing.

When you talk about the actual process of plotting and writing, what comes to most people — almost inevitably — is writer’s block. I can get severe instances of writer’s block, sometimes lasting months or even years. Writer’s block is very closely related to mood, of course. There is no easy solution out of writer’s block (if there was I wouldn’t be plagued with it) but you have 2 choices which have worked for different people. Option 1 is to keep writing short pieces without caring about quality, until you have escaped from the stalemate. Option 2 is to stop writing entirely and put the idea aside till one day you feel the itch to write again. Both methods have worked for me at various times, and both methods have also failed me. It is up to you to discover what works best for you, if there is any at all.

As mentioned in last week’s entry, I like to envision scenes of the story in my mind in order to spark off the plot. Such scenes are sometimes accompanied by music, whether in the form of instrumentals or actual songs. Music is a great mood-setter, but be careful not to be too caught up in your song that you forget where your writing is going! I recommend listening to the music as you envision your plot, but not during the actual writing process itself.

Well, that’s what I have to say about writing and how it relates to plots and mood. This is a pretty messy entry, but it reflects my current mood so I would say the desired effect has been achieved. Till then, may you get inspiration for your writing endeavours from yourself!

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