Friday, September 13, 2013

The Good, the Bad, and the High School

Full disclosure: If I'm writing -  actually getting story on virtual paper, there is no place, no matter how awful, that's totally bad. It's only when I'm trying and failing to write that I claim someplace is worst. I'm keeping a running list.
  1. Onboard a moving boat while a cat is having a full blown panic attack and insists she'll only be okay if you hold her and never let her go. Though, to be honest, that can go much worse. Sometimes the cat gets seasick into the bargain.
  2. Onboard a moving boat because getting lost in your own little fictional world and forgetting to look up at the horizon once in a while is a sure fire recipe for getting seasick yourself.
  3. Family events of any kind  - they've put up with this writing shit for however many years old you are. When it's Mom's 70th birthday? No one understands the need to just get this awesome idea on paper.
  4. In a moving car - again with the motion sickness thing. I'm fortunate that airplanes aren't usually a problem. Or maybe it's that I'm already drugged to the gills in order to fly in the first place.
  5. Anyplace with an internet connection - seriously. The best and most progress I made on books ever has been when my internet connection was down. Easy to make fictional tracks when you're not being tempted away to glance at email. Or Twitter. Or Facebook.
  6. In the company of my nearest and dearest. I love my family. I promise. But there's something about me wanting to sit down and make word count that turns my normally rational husband and standoffish cats into creatures who adore me and can't possibly live without me. And they must all off them tell me so the second my fingers make contact with my keyboard. Writing email? No one cares. Blog posts? Yawn. Open the WIP? It's like I opened a can of magical husband and cat luring scent - pizza for him, tuna for the felines.
This is why I'm going to say what I'm going to say: Public places are generally conducive to my getting a novel written. So long as I *like* the place, I have  my mp3 player, and a little bit of space. The trick is to carve a tiny bit of personal space out of that public place. Make your booth in the café into your own little world. My corner table at the tea shop I jokingly call my office allows me to spread out just enough to have a buffer between me and any potential neighbors. The headphones and soundtracks I've chosen close out the public to an even larger degree.

The place where I wrote that I hated the most? High school. Wasn't a happy kid, I grant you that. It's hard to claim it's the worst place I ever wrote, though, because writing in order to survive high school is what made it necessary for me to write to survive period. And as coping mechanisms go? This is a-okay. I make shit up and occasionally, someone pays me for it. What's not to like?


  1. "Open the WIP? It's like I opened a can of magical husband and cat luring scent..."

    It's amazing how loved ones are drawn to the vibe of creativity!

    1. I've always wondered if there' some kind of energy shift - the cats especially seem sensitive to that kind of thing.