I think one of the hardest parts of writing, for me, is finding the right head space, tricking myself into slipping out of my physical reality and into a fictional world. It can also be hard coming back out of that other world, but that's usually not a problem.
The book I'm currently working on is set at Christmas. I'm writing a story about a couple stranded in the snow, making love in front of the fire in a cozy cabin in the mountains while I'm sweating through a summer heat wave. This isn't the first time I've done this--I'm sure it won't be the last--so I thought I'd put together a small list of tips on how to trick your brain into feeling the out of season vibes.
The main thing you want to do is to involve all of your senses--or at least as many as possible.
I'm something of a scent junkie (you can check out my posts HERE, HERE and HERE for more about that). So I generally keep a lot of essential oils and scented candles around anyway. For this book I'm mostly sticking to bayberry candles, frankincense incense, pine and peppermint essential oils, and gingerbread-scented wax melts in a diffuser.
Sight is a bit more tricky because nothing here looks even remotely snowy or mountainous. But I have a pice of black-and-white speckled granite that I picked up in Tahoe. I've hung a few ornaments near my desk. My computer desktop is a Christmas book cover. And I've broken out the Christmas mugs--including my new favorite a big, red, Rae Dunn, double-sided mug that has naughty on one side, nice on the other.
Sound is super easy. Spotify has tons of Christmas playlists. A lot of times the instrumental covers are my go-to because I have a tendency to get distracted by the lyrics. I've also created my own playlist for this specific book: Christmasing With You
Taste is another easy one. I've been snacking on candy canes and making my own gingerbread lattes and mulled wine. Most years, I keep a carton of eggnog and a bag of cranberries in the freezer to aid me in my holiday writing, but I moved last January, so this year I don't have either of those. Republic of Tea's Red Velvet Cuppa Hot Chocolate tea is nothing at all like eggnog, but it's doing the trick. I would like to find some savory flavors, but nothing's come to mind so far. Thanksgiving sandwiches? The red and green holiday lasagna that's a bitch to make but definitely evokes the holidays? I might have to bite the bullet. We'll see.
Touch is the toughest because I'm not donning fluffy socks and a sweater. I might have to settle for wrapping my hands around a mug of something warm or taking a holiday-scented bath. Or luring my husband under the mistletoe? Yeah, that might be my best bet.
Christmasing With You will release on November 1st as part of the Let's Get Naughty holiday anthology--available for pre-order now!
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