About the only tool I use is a piece of poster board with my character's faces pasted to it. See this post for what I mean. http://bit.ly/dmxNfy
A little chaos, a little mess, resource I reach for frequently.
I always have music playing regardless of the environment.
I need total silence in order to write effectively. As long as I am isolated at my writing work spot with no interuptions I buzz along. So I try to guard my space and time to mamke sure that nothing interferes.
I need my soda,and paper and pen.at night it is tea.and I am all set
Surroundings don't matter, just quiet and comfortable with a computer will do
playing music, nice sceneries. sometimes people just to observe them.
Hell, if I can find room in my work area to sit and write, is an accomplishment ! To push the papers and mail out of the way gets me going. it's what's in my mind that I want to get to. I've spent too much time in my life making sure all the outer trappings look just right, instead of just going inside myself and working what's there like a piece of clay. My work area is my mind. If that is clear, I'm set.
I play the radio low and it helps me concentrate. I also have a door to the room I write in so that I can shut out the everyday noises that go on in the rest of the house. I have my desk near a window so that when I'm tense or blocked or just need a break, I can look outside and enjoy the sun and watch the birds at the birdfeeder just outside my window.
Lots of books... Oh, and a dictionary (English and Spanish)
Music, pictures, symbols. I think most important is that I've built a sanctuary for myself. Wherever I am and wherever I'll be, I'll always have a place that's mine to relax and feel safe in. That's the most important part. For a while, it was just being able to lock my door and not worry about being interrupted. Before that, it was knowing that I could stay awake long after everyone else was asleep and I could achieve that feeling of being truly alone and with myself.
I love listening to music when I write, and wearing a baseball cap too. I have four that I choose from now, I used to have my clemson one. But that old one has been retired, now I have my Nebraska Huskers, USF, Penguins, and my new Purple Clemson hat!! Music ranges from country to hard rock to different off the wall things!
Good people and coffee.
Inspirational items that remind me of the place or characters of my story. Lots of notes and clippings.