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message 1: by J. Daniel, Lurking since 2015 (new)

J. Daniel Layfield (jdaniellayfield) | 94 comments Mod
I bite my nails. Always have. But when I'm writing, I gnaw those suckers to the nub, most of the time not even realizing I'm doing it. I'm just staring at the screen, trying to find the right phrase to move the image in my head on to the page, when I suddenly realize if I chew any further it might technically be considered cannibalism.

Anybody else out there practice any bad habits while writing?

message 2: by Charles (new)

Charles Hash | 1054 comments Chain smoker.

message 3: by J.A. (new)

J.A. Gilbert (goodreadscomjagilbert) | 7 comments Drinking too much coffee and nibbling on biscuits!

message 4: by Joe (new)

Joe Jackson (shoelessauthor) I sometimes try to write when my 22-month-old daughter is still awake. Never works! :D

message 5: by K.P. (new)

K.P. Merriweather (kp_merriweather) | 266 comments i grind my teeth. harder when im in deep thought. after breaking my molars i now chain smoke... which jacks up my computers (never smoke around your computers!)
i need a new bad habit...

message 6: by T.L. (new)

T.L. Clark (tlcauthor) | 727 comments When I read on screen my cursor follows the words like a finger; it annoys the hell out of my husband! :-O

message 7: by Riley, Viking Extraordinaire (new)

Riley Amos Westbrook (sonshinegreene) | 1510 comments Mod
My bad habit is bad posture. I can't type upright, I have to hunch over the keyboard!

message 8: by Martin (new)

Martin Wilsey | 447 comments One bad habit a lot of Indie authors has is going back and revising too much. It can hang you up so you never finish.

You should hammer all the way though and finish the first draft before you revise at all.

Otherwise your early chapters are revised a lot and you last chapters hardly at all.

It make for a badly balanced feel and rushed, not well thought out ending.

If you are like me, you have read seveaal of there books.

message 9: by Ken (last edited Aug 19, 2015 12:33PM) (new)

Ken Doggett (kendoggett) My bad habit is coffee. Since doctors alternate between telling us that it's good/bad for us, I can feel alternately good and bad about myself at the same time.

message 10: by Christina (new)

Christina McMullen (cmcmullen) Coffee and stuffing my face. I used to chain smoke and somehow managed to quit, hence the stuffing my face.

Also, internet... Speaking of.... *vanishes in a cloud of perceived productivity*

message 11: by Dwayne, Head of Lettuce (new)

Dwayne Fry | 4269 comments Mod
Getting distracted is my number one bad habit while writing. I start off looking up something on the Internet - "research", you know... and the next thing you know I've been on for fifteen minutes when the thing I needed to look up took about thirty seconds. I find what I need, then I check on this group to see what's going on, oh... then I might as well see if I had a sale in the last five minutes. Then I go into YouTube and watch some music video and, what the heck, might as play Avengers Alliance on Facebook for a few minutes... Yep. The Internet is the best and worst thing that's ever happened to me as a writer.

About coffee...

Coffee is not a bad habit. It is a lifestyle. Vonnegut, after all, was a coffee achiever.

Trying to write while I am extremely tired. can't keep the eyes open and the fingers are reacting like rubber bands, but I must keep typing... so I can delete the whole bit of nonsense the next day.

Dicking around with covers when I am not even done with the story. Yes, that's a good one. I have covers done for stories that I started months ago that may never be finished.

message 12: by G.G. (new)

G.G. (ggatcheson) | 2491 comments Internet for me. I should turn the darn thing off when I try to write. I'll find any excuses to stop writing: check emails, check Facebook, check Twitter, heck check words definitions, funny videos,YouTube, you name it.. It goes from one search to another. I end up with twenty plus pages open and not remembering what I was looking for, or even why.

Any excuse is as good as another to get out of my manuscript. :(

@Riley I also had a bad posture habit and ended up on my back for a few months before I eneded up at the doctor and in physical therapy. Watch out how you sit.

message 13: by Sally Ann (last edited Aug 19, 2015 02:03PM) (new)

Sally Ann Sims | 25 comments Internet, as GG says. It feeds into writers' propensity to be hunter/gatherers of ideas, images, But for me time on the Internet really cuts down on productivity and is a distraction with no end. So now, prior to a writing session, I switch off service to the modem and move to another floor (so I won't be tempted to switch it on again in 5 minutes!). When I get that got-to-check-the-Internet impulse, I pace: living room, hall, kitchen, dining room, then go back to my computer to continue writing. Walking the loop is much better than Internet browsing for freeing up ideas and images and untangling character motivation, etc. This system seems to be working for me. Knock on wood. If all else fails, I could go back to my electronic typewriter. Although the clacking scares the cats....

message 14: by April (last edited Aug 19, 2015 02:05PM) (new)

April Wilson (aprilwilson) 1. Chocolate and something to drink (soft drink, fruit juice) - all sugar. BAD!

2. I spent a year writing my first published novel and gained weight during that year. (Emotional eating?)

3. Lack of exercise, because I sit at work all day and I sit at home all evening writing.

p.s. I have to have access to the Internet to write -,, and general research. I research a lot!


message 15: by K.P. (new)

K.P. Merriweather (kp_merriweather) | 266 comments i solved going online while writing - installed a dictionary and thesaurus on the puter. though i will bring out the big boys for some obscure word (random house 2nd international or american heritage 2nd college and rogets 4th) most times i dont want to break my flow flipping pages.
sometimes i need to research something and next thing i know i wasted 5 hours online and somehow fell into nuclear physics on wikipedia or whatever else currently not related to my current project. (though nuclear physics is related to a different project and i claim I'm writing notes on that one 'for later' see how that vicious cycle starts?!

as for coffee - im totally derp without it. if not for insomnia and crashing and the occasional tom collins... i cant work without my cigs and coffee. hunter s thompson i aint but its how i roll lolz

message 16: by Morris (new)

Morris Graham (morris_g) Having the internet up for me increases productivity and accuracy. I check everything. If I am not sure a word should be hyphenated, i check references. If I wanted to check the command structure of police or military, I check the net. I even check lists of ethnic surnames. Google is my friend.

message 17: by K.P. (new)

K.P. Merriweather (kp_merriweather) | 266 comments lolz morris i should google more often but im research book fiend. you should see my bedroom and living room... wall to wall shelves of books. every last one of them for research depending on what book im working on lolz -_-

message 18: by Sally Ann (new)

Sally Ann Sims | 25 comments Interesting to hear everyone's preference. I tend to separate out the research piece with the Internet on and the writing of the draft with the Internet off (flagging things to either research more or check for accuracy later). Of course, by the time I'm doing the first draft I've already done a lot of research online, in books, or out in the actual real world.

message 19: by Christina (new)

Christina McMullen (cmcmullen) Sally wrote: "... or out in the actual real world.

Good heavens! Why on earth would we want to go there? *shudder*


message 20: by Sally Ann (new)

Sally Ann Sims | 25 comments Christina wrote: Good heavens! Why on earth would we want to go there? *shudder*

But that's the fun part!

message 21: by J. Daniel, Lurking since 2015 (new)

J. Daniel Layfield (jdaniellayfield) | 94 comments Mod
These are all great! I'll add Internet wandering to my bad habits as well. Write a sentence, check Goodreads, check email, check sales dashboard, edit sentence, write next sentence, repeat.

message 22: by Owen (new)

Owen O'Neill (owen_r_oneill) | 1509 comments J. Daniel wrote: "Anybody else out there practice any bad habits while writing?"

Yeah: not writing. Becoming distracted by odd tidbits when I get on-line to check the spelling of some chemical compound that's not in the spellchecker. Checking email. Raiding the fridge. (And so on.)

Christina wrote: "Also, internet... Speaking of.... *vanishes in a cloud of perceived productivity*"

^ This to the nines! [Puff of orange smoke]

message 23: by Rachael (new)

Rachael Eyre (rachaeleyre) | 192 comments Procrastination is definitely my deadliest sin. I come home at the end of the day and think, "I'm really tired, I'll just read tonight -" and before I know it, four days have gone by without a smidgen of writing / typing. I've had to tell myself not to write any more blogs until the book's done, or all my creative energy and focus goes into that instead.

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