1. ellebell16
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    ellebell16 Member

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    Writing In a Bad Atmosphere

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by ellebell16, Jul 22, 2011.

    I still live with my parents (still have a year of school left) and I'm finding it very hard to write. My parents have constantly been fighting and on the brink of divorce so it's very difficult to find peaceful times in my house. I really want to write, but it's hard because I have to stay home for my mom (she's always sick and my dad isn't very sympathetic). The only thing that keeps me sane is writing, and I just can't do it in my house. The words, the muse...it just won't come. I feel like I'm stuck in this big gray fog in my house, because nobody speaks to each other and everyone's always fighting. But I need to write.

    How can I find a place to write? What can I do to make writing at home easier?
     
  2. Fullmetal Xeno
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    Fullmetal Xeno Protector of Literature Contributor

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    Ask a close relative to take you somewhere peaceful. If you can't do that, go outside and let your imagination grow. But i kinda have your same situation, expect im only 14 and my parents aren't getting a divorce. But i feel deeply sorry for you, and i hope your mom hangs in there. If you can find a good place to write, and let your ideas pour onto the paper your goals to becoming a published writer will be at a much higher chance when you can concentrate. Even if you get rejected alot, don't give up. Stay in touch with your dream and eventually you will get a good publishing house. Best of Luck! :) :D
     
  3. Yoshiko
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    Yoshiko Contributing Member Contributor

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    It's insensitive, but work through it. Try. It's possible. Writing is a fantastic escape if you ever need one. I can't say I've been in the same situation but work through it - you might be shocked at the type of writing you can produce under such circumstances. I've written through relationship drama* and dying relatives and found writing to be a comfort. Don't think but, rather, just go for it. Anything, everything - ramble if you have to. Just get something down. Peace isn't essential: until March this year I was writing in a room with 20+ people coming and going all day. It was a pain but it got done.

    If you struggle then plug in a pair of earphones and crank up the volume. Write when others are sleeping if you really need to.

    Hang in there. ♥


    *At the moment I'm using writing to help me get through the end of a relationship with my (now former) partner of two years after he came out of the closet at the start of this month. Doubt it weighs against what you're going through, but it's still not easy.
     
  4. whitefairy24601
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    whitefairy24601 Member

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    Find yourself a spot... outside. I have two outdoor places- behind a bush and under a tree- where I can just let myself go, no matter what the season. Honestly, I have this pair of finger less gloves I wear that cost me like a dollar- I lopped off the fingers myself-and I just totally get in the mood. Writing is fantastic because it is a way to take you away from the hardships of the world in order to transfer you to your own. You can "get away" from everything just a couple of feet away from your own home. And I am so sorry for everything. My parents divorced when I was eight and you never really get over it. I hope that everything works out for you. If anything is good, there is nothing like experiencing life to help you get it down. Even fiction needs a bit of reality. Stay strong!
     
  5. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Turn a disadvantage into a strength. Plot depends upon conflict, so attune yourself to the conflict surrounding you, including your own feelings in the matter. As it energizes a plot, it can also energize your writing.
     
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  6. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    It sounds like the suggestions to get out aren't really available because there are reasons why you're stuck there. If you have music that you can listen to while you write, then get yourself a pair of noise-suppression headphones and use them when you want to write. You'll still have ample opportunity to take Cogito's advice and soak up the conflict when you're not actually writing.

    Good luck!
     
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  7. MRD
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    MRD Senior Member

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    Write when things quiet down, early morning or late night, or any relatively peaceful time in-between. Grab some cookies and a cup of hot chocolate, sit down, and bring pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard, more likely).

    If you're still having trouble, then just write about your thoughts. If someone starts shouting, write about them shouting. Write about the teletubies if you have to. As long as you're writing, inspiration will come.

    I hope that helps you, it certainly works for me.
     
  8. Mugen
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    Mugen New Member

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    This. No great writer ever had a pleasant life.
     
  9. JSLCampbell
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    JSLCampbell Member

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    I'm sorry to hear about that; family problems are never nice.

    Do you have a place where yo regularly write? A place that's yours, or somewhere you can write to that effect? If you can, try and take up a writer's "den", whether that's the desk next to your bed, in a conservatory, in the loft or basement, or so on; somewhere where you draw that line between your writer's world and the outside world, where you try and leave everything behind when you settle down to write, and where you always tend to go to write so that you can get into the habit of disconnecting yourself.

    Of course, that's easier said then done, and it may not be perfect if you're being interrupted a lot. But it might go at least some of the way to helping you to keep writing efficiently.

    As Cogito said, I was going to mention about trying to draw positives from this situation. Writing is about emotion. Every time you become stressed or irritated, or find it difficult to concentrate on something for some reason or another, or every time you manage to feel positive in a difficult situation, you're understanding these types of emotion better and any character you create that goes through situations that arise these emotions, you'll have a better grip over. I know it's not always that simple, and maybe it's not even useful to you at the moment. Maybe you're writing something very upbeat and positive at the moment and feel you're being dragged down. But at least you can take away that you're gaining valuable life experience which is consequently likely to help your writing.

    The problem is that, as long as you're not 18, your parents can dictate your life, and it can be difficult to gain the independence you need to pursue something you want to do with your life especially if they're being unreasonable or aren't thinking of others. I like to cycle cross-country and long distances, but my parents are stubbornly overprotective, and until I turn 18 in a few months and/or decide to leave home, it's difficult for me to do it (well, they can't really stop me, but it'd cause so much negative vibe and I'm still dependent on them for the moment). In 2 or 3 years you'll be a fully-fledged adult and you'll have all the independence you need to write in your own, comfortable way. But for now, if you really can't be productive, what you can do is not waste this time, and use it to build your experience in other ways. Obviously reading fiction books will help, but you could also spend your time reading reviews, analysing books, taking English Lit and Creative Writing classes (once you're at College/in your spare time). There's also many, many books on writing theory, writing concepts, etc. They always say "you have to know the rules before you can break them," and now would be a great time to try and learn and pick up on everything you can about creative writing while you feel you can't be productive yourself.

    Hope it all works out (y)
     
  10. Blue_Lotus
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    Blue_Lotus Senior Member

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    I feel your pain, been there done that, skipped the tee shirt on my way out the door...
    music works but I found it hard to write with loud tunes drowning out my thoughts.

    Ear plugs however... I found worked well, so long as there is no viloence that you have to be concerned with I would try that, maybe a 30 min time out after all your other duties are take care of grabe a 1$ coffee at a local joint, and take that time to write down what comes to you, then during the chaos you can weave your tales around those thoughts...

    You will find a way, true talent does not stay quiet for long.
     
  11. Trish
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    Trish I've been deleted.. again Contributor

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    Everyone has given you excellent advice. If you can write with music on I use Jlab's J3 Earbuds and they're excellent at drowning out noise (they have 4 different silicone covers you can choose from when you get them so they fit just right and work like ear plugs) and they don't hurt my ears at all. They have pretty good sound and like I said... noise - GONE (my neighbors have incredibly loud parties and I like to write on my porch).

    Just try to remember that this stage in your life is not a room that you're closed in, it's a hallway, and you're just passing through. You'll get there. *Hugs*
     
  12. The-Joker
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    The-Joker Contributing Member Contributor

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    Creativity and emotion are intricately linked. Most of the time a writer uses creativity to evoke emotion, but sometimes emotion is what ignites creativity. Use the sadness and conflict in your life as the lifeblood of your writing. Imbue your words with the sorrow you feel. I know you're writing fiction, but fiction reflects reality, and in the end all we want is to move the reader. So basically if you can't fight the darkness in your life, try embracing it and building your story around it. You never know, it could turn out to be brilliant, and somewhere down the line readers might feel some part of what you're experiencing now, as they follow the conflict of your fictional characters.

    Remember you don't have to be happy to write. Some of the best pieces of literature are born in times of turmoil.
     
  13. jwatson
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    jwatson Active Member

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    I know how you feel. I was born and raised in Canada with Middle Eastern parents. I'm currently in Jordan with my mom. I don't speak Arabic, I know no one whatsoever, and my mom's family is loud and obnoxious, and I am missing home like hell. Of course, that is nothing compared to your obstacle, but I somewhat understand the feeling. It's kind of like you have no space to breathe, no freedom to do what you want. . . But, as I'm trapped here, I constantly get ideas on things to write. Also, I've been dabbling in poetry as well. I find it easier and it gives me a sense of accomplishment. You can try that. I think you should look for inspiration in what you're experiencing, maybe write a short story with parents on the verge of divorce. After all, it's best to write what you know, and maybe it will help with this feeling of being trapped. It will unload some emotion. :)
     
  14. Fullmetal Xeno
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    Fullmetal Xeno Protector of Literature Contributor

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    Everybody has giving great advice, the one who posted above us and said "Great writers never have a pleasant life" is true.
     
  15. The-Joker
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    The-Joker Contributing Member Contributor

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    That's not entirely true. In that case I don't want to be a great writer. I'll take the pleasant life option.

    You play with the hand you're dealt.
     
  16. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    Who said anything about loud tunes? When I listen to music while writing, I generally rely on classical, operatic pop or smooth jazz. I don't listen to music with vocals (except if not in English) because lyrics are distracting to me.
     
  17. akrushinski
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    akrushinski New Member

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    If you have a laptop, I suggest taking it outside as long as the weather isn't inclimate. I find it is always quieter outdoors. Sometimes I simply sit on my back patio and plug my laptop charger into the outdoor outlet, enjoying the lack of mechanical buzzing around me while I type away.

    If you don't have a laptop, do this with the traditional pen and paper.

    You may not be able to get away inside the house from the fighting and turmoil (for which it is regrettable; I do hope your situation improves and I wish you the best of luck, along with my sympathy). However, being outdoors, even if it is just on your back porch, might cut you off from the stress a little.

    Good luck!
     
  18. thewordsmith
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    thewordsmith Contributing Member Contributor

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    Sorry about your current circumstance but, remember, it's not permanent and it's not your fault. Don't take on the tension and stress of your parents' issues. You can help them if they want it but don't own their problems. (Heaven knows you'll have enough of your own in life without adding their baggage, too!)

    Go to the library. Libraries are much more than "SH-h-h-h-h!" these days. Most have computer rooms so, if you don't have a laptop to take with you, you can always use theirs. If you've got a flash drive or thumb drive, plug it into a computer at the library. If not, just find yourself a table or chair in a quiet corner and go to work with a laptop or pad or paper and pencil. If the library isn't an option, try taking a blanket to a park, cemetary, or just your backyard. Spread out the blanket and pull out your laptop or paper and pencil.

    Good luck and, remember, you've got a community of friends here if things get too tough at home.
     
  19. flipflop
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    flipflop Senior Member

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    I disagree with many points here but my advice would be choose to be a little selfish and get out. Dont feel guilty about leaving if you can. Dont burn your bridges. Even if you just leave for a couple of months.

    Best of luck whatever you decide.
     
  20. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    I agree with this. Do you have a relative you could move in with? Your parents are adults, and you're their child - not to patronize you or say you are a little kid, but it's not appropriate for parents to draw their kids into stuff like this. It's not your job to keep things running smoothly. If you can move in with another relative who's stable, do it.
     
  21. Dreamworx95
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    Dreamworx95 Member

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    I empathize with you. My parents aren't very happy together either most of the time. I've grown accustomed to tuning it out though. There's no way I let their problems affect my writing. Like you said, it's the only thing that keeps us sane. As has been suggested, you could listen to music to block it all out, or attune yourself to the conflict and turn all that negative energy into creative energy.
     
  22. Daydream
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    Daydream Contributing Member Contributor

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    Maybe put on some calming music and listen to it with earphones? Works for me ^^ Blocks out literally everything! Only other alternatives I find are good would be at your university/college library or in a park!
     
  23. Ashrynn
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    Ashrynn Active Member

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    I just caused my mom to fight with my dad just so I could see what happened. It was easy and it was almost as if it was exactly how I wanted it to go. I found it so laughable, they were like characters in a tragedy.

    This absolute disgust I have made me very....dark....moody....I don't know really. I'm either angry or happy, but I just want to write it.

    So I've decided to use this in order to write my characters background. Coming from a broken home and running away to change things only to wind up in a plane crash.

    I plan to write it up and post a little bit of it here actually.
     
  24. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    Whaaaat?
     
  25. Trish
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    Trish I've been deleted.. again Contributor

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    Curious as to how this is helpful to the OP? Also as to how you think this is relevant to this thread at all?

    On another note, I feel pretty disgusted as well, though I'm pretty sure it's not for the same reason you do.

    @ellebell - I agree with Mallory and Flip - if you have an available option to leave you should do so. I know you said your mom is sick, but you shouldn't stay just to take care of her. It truly isn't your job, no matter how you're made to feel. I wish you the best.
     

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