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Uploaded:2015-03-25
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Beth: I know that every author has their own writing process. Um, what or who serves as inspiration for you and do you have any weird rituals that you do while you're writing?

John: Um, I mean, I have a lot of weird rituals because I have OCD so like a lot of people who live with OCD I have some compulsions that I use or struggle with depending on how you construct it.

But as far as my writing inspirations, I mean, my biggest inspiration for... I am very, very lucky as a writer to have many readers in my life, like, readers I can connect to through Twitter or Tumblr or YouTube or whatever so that I can, you know, read their comments and their posts about what interests them and what's difficult for them, what they care about, how they care about it. And that's my biggest inspiration is that community of readers and the people who view the videos that I make with my brother.

But I'm also inspired by other writers, I think. I read a lot, I love reading and I think reading is kind of the best apprenticeship that we have as writers. It's how we figure out how people have used language to make stories live inside of people's heads. So those are big inspirations for me.

I guess my weirdest quirk in terms of, like, rituals is that I, uh, I have a keyboard quirk. I switch keyboards every draft and then if there's a problem, if something isn't going well I throw out the keyboard and replace it with a different keyboard.

Alyona: No.

J: Yeah.

A: Seriously?

J: Yeah.

A: So do you still have...

K: Keyboards are only, like, five bucks.

A: What happens when it goes well?

J: Well than I keep the keyboard.

A: Does it go on the wall?

J: No, no, no, no, no. Like, I have, like, this is the Looking for Alaska keyboard.

A: Yeah, yeah. Looking for Alaska, Paper Towns, Fault.

J: Paper Towns keyboard.

Nancy: I think you actually need, instead of throwing them out, you actually need to start auctioning these off.

J: Oh yeah, I could do that.

N: Talk about them on Vlogbrothers and say "Hey look. You want to buy my keyboard? It's haunted because I did not like this keyboard."

J: Yeah. Yeah. Right. Right exactly. This keyboard did not work.

N: But what I also find interesting is the fact that you're using a keyboard means that you're using a desktop computer.

J: No, no, no. I use a laptop and I use, like, a USB thing or a wireless. They're very cheap. You can get these days...

N: Well it's odd because if you were to just use the laptop you'd have to throw the whole laptop away.

J: I know, that would be expensive.

A: Oh, that would be devastating.

N: That would not work at all.

J: Yeah, yeah. I do use my laptop computer when I'm traveling.