1. HarleyQuinn
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    HarleyQuinn Member

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    Writing in Delirium - how illness affects writing

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by HarleyQuinn, Feb 23, 2011.

    Hey all!

    I've been fighting back the flu for a few days now and wanted to share some ideas I had about how to keep busy while quarantined in your room.

    I'm probably like most attention-deprived people and even in a delirious state am somehow able to generate thoughts while my brain's on fire. Also, like most people, I can't take naps during the day. It's just not possible. So what I find helps me to rest and relax the best is to keep my brain occupied on things other than my condition (otherwise, I'd just be complaining about it all to my roommates...and no one wants that lol). Here's a few examples:

    *I recently started to re-read To Kill a Mockingbird. Not only is it a great story, it keeps me focused on ways I can improve my own writing through dialogue, setting, and character details.

    *Also, I keep a journal - and for those who don't, give it a try. What I would recommend is to begin a journal by writing down the events of the day in quick bullet points. Then, the more comfortable you become with remembering the days' events and analyzing what was going on through your mind during those moments, the better you will be at picking out the more interesting points, which means more time for savoring those minute details you thought you had forgotten. Who knows? Those details could be gems for future stories.

    *Third, although the Internet can be a relaxing tool for some, I would recommend using it for no longer than an hour or two at a time. And if you're running a fever of 104...you'll most likely be passed out on your bed anyway. Still, after I cleared the worst of my fever but still had congestion, I found it relaxing to keep myself busy online with reading short stories on this forum and posting this thread, avoiding playing games or wasting time. If there's one thing I can't stand, it's wasting time when there's so much that can be done - even when you're sick!

    *Lastly, there's a fanfic I've been putting together for the past two months that I've grown quite passionate about. I say, if it's something that gets you excited and motivates you to roll out of bed, gross hair and all, you should try to do some work on it. At the very least, it'll make you feel like you've accomplished something, despite being glued to the bed all day.

    Again, these are just some ideas/suggestions for all would-be writers out there (like me) who feel like they should be doing something while being bed-ridden for a few days. And I'd like to stress that these are only suggestions and that if you need rest, get it! I'm only giving these suggestions because I'm a terribly light sleeper to begin with and being sick makes it that much worse. If anyone has any suggestions or experiences that they'd like to share, that would be great! I'm always open to new ideas and trying out new things.

    Good luck!

    HQ

    P.S. Drink lots of liquids, like momma always said!

    P.P.S. Don't read your books too close to a humidifier. You'll end up hanging it to dry on the clothesline. Trust me :p
     
  2. Mystic_snowfang
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    Mystic_snowfang Member

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    From my experience don't write when you're sick or lacking sleep... or too full of some sort of energy drink... and most defintly NOT a combination of all three. When you read what you've produced later you'll wonder WHAT THE HELL was I thinking. Sure muse over ideas, write them down. Just don't edit and save over your hard work.
     
  3. madhoca
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    madhoca Contributing Member Contributor

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    I've always found mild drunkenness or delirium very useful, but the exhaustion after flu leaves me with a totally empty brain, unable to write anything to purpose. Mad dreams are the best inspiration, but they tend to be full of mad plot holes as well. Coffee does nothing for me, and I've never smoked (anything) in my life, so I can't rely on artificial stimulants, really. Shame.
    Make sure you eat well and take the vitamins--that gives you the best energy.
    Get well soon.
     
  4. Melzaar the Almighty
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    Melzaar the Almighty Contributing Member Contributor

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    Uurgh, I've been sick for a few months now with various things... Fed up of it. :p I just end up watching videos of stuff online because I can't face working. But when I do write it's sort of maniacal and I write tons and tons. :p Being sick does weird things to my attention span. I'm too lethargic to be hyperactive and focused on 12 things at once like normal.
     
  5. mg357
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    mg357 Active Member

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    I tend to write MORE when i am sick my body slows down but my mind runs like an out of control train.
     
  6. Lemex
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    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

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    It's not 'delirium' but I've always noticed how my writing changes when I'm in a mood - especially when I'm depressed. When ill I just tend to make notes. I don't trust myself with writing anything more than 200 words when ill, I feel bad enough as it is without looking back at my scribbles.
     

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