I don’t know about you, but it seems that my brain does most of its thinking when it’s least wanted.
I’m sure you’ve had the experience. It can come upon you at any time: you’re minding your own business when suddenly you slip into daydreaming. Your mind wanders and you end up thinking about tons of unrelated things. According to my personal experience, as well as what Facebook tells me, I find that most of this kind of thought happens at night, before one goes to sleep. I suppose there’s just something about the lack of stimuli that allows me to process the events of the day in peace. Unfortunately this leads to my brain touching on every subject known to man, none of them having anything to do with sleep.
Most of the time it will be some obscure topic having to do with a TV show, or a book I’ve read. It can be anything, really. Sometimes I’ll think about plots I’ve made up, work through a problem or consider how a certain character would react in a certain situation (kind of like the nighttime equivalent of a short story). Or maybe I’ll come up with a few ideas for future blog posts. It really depends on the night, I suppose, as well as on the person doing the thinking.
Maybe this is our brains’ way of connecting things, the way dreams do. Maybe we’re just so pummeled with other things during the day that there is literally no other way to get this stuff out there in the open.
It seems that even published authors have this problem, if it even is a problem. In The Twilight Saga: The Official Illustrated Guide, there is an interview between Stephenie Meyer and author Shannon Hale. In the interview, “SH” is Hale and “SM” is Meyer, just in case you’re confused, and part of it goes like this:
SH: It’s like having a newborn, writing a book, isn’t it?
SM: It is. Well, because you lie there in bed- and, oh, heaven help you if you start thinking about plotline. If you start getting a little bit of dialogue in your head, you’re doomed- you’ll never get to sleep.
SH: It is so true…If, for whatever reason, I wake up…and if my mind, for one second, goes back to the book I’m writing right now, I’m done for the rest of the night. I can’t go back to sleep, because my mind starts working over and over it…so when I sit down to write it it’s more productive, because I’ve been working over it in my brain. But…when you do that in the middle of the night you’re doomed.
SM: …I have about fourteen different books, and every night it’s a new one. And I’m coming up with solutions for this one point that really bothered me in one story. I thought maybe I couldn’t write it because of this one point. But then I’ll wake up at four o’clock in the morning with a perfect solution, and then I can’t go back to sleep.
Maybe this is just a symptom of having a writer’s brain. Maybe this makes me a better writer by helping me work things out and never letting go of something until it’s done. It’s like school for my creative side in that respect. (And here I go, “NO! Not more school! Why did I just make that connection for myself?!”)
Whatever the effect, it would be nice to fall asleep tonight before sunrise…*
Also. Just wondering about this, but: I’ve written a couple of song parodies. They’re about Harry Potter and The Hunger Games (so far- maybe I’ll expand in the future), and I was wondering if you guys would want to see those. Just an idea. Comment if you have an opinion on this. If it seems agreeable, I’ll work a couple in someplace.
Also again. There’s a new blog out there, and it’s called Teens Can Write, Too! As you can probably see from the name, it’s about teens (of which I am one) who can and do write. The plan is for various teen bloggers to contribute a post in a blog chain for each month, centered around a theme. It’s a group effort, which is really cool. I’m glad to say I will be a part of October’s blog chain. If you want to check it out, click on that link and subscribe if you are so inclined.