Recently, a friend, who is not a writer, stated, “As long as you have a laptop, you can write anywhere.” I raised my eyebrows, ready to retort, ARE YOU SERIOUS, but closed my agape mouth, assuming this is a common sentiment. Of course, one can write anywhere. We see people write in cafes, coffee shops, parks, and beaches every day. However, writing a novel requires full immersion with little or no distractions to craft a well-written story. Naturally, all writers have different degrees of concentration, but most prefer a quiet space without interference.
EARLY RISER OR NIGHT OWL?
I’ve had an ongoing dialog with other authors about their writing habits, discovering two distinct creative types: EARLY RISERS and NIGHT OWLS. But there’s a common theme in both groups, DISCIPLINE, and CONSISTENCY. Whether you write at the crack of dawn, or edge of midnight, most writer’s schedules are as routine as brushing their teeth.
I’m an early bird, rising at 4:00 a.m., sometimes earlier. Dawn’s magical aura inspires greater creativity. My mind is sharper after slumber’s miraculous realignment of prior day’s thoughts and insights. I write until the soft glow of morning fades, and words subside. After a creative bout, afternoons consist of research for my novel, editing, blogging, social media posting, responding to emails, and other daily chores. It’s impossible to write during the afternoon with life’s distractions. So, like my fitness workouts, writing is scheduled daily at the same time and place― in my writing cave.
THE WRITING CAVE
Most writers have a perfect spot where they shut out the world as they create their own. Lighting, seating, sound, writing tools arranged neatly or cluttered to produce an ambiance conducive to creativity. Stephen King states in Memoir of the Craft “For any writer, but for the beginning writer in particular, it’s wise to eliminate every possible distraction.”
From 4:00 a.m. until late morning, my door is always shut. Lately, I alternated between my window desk with city views, and cushy sofa in the corner with my constant, metallic companion on my lap with nothing but my thoughts, and dawn’s peace and quiet, until city din buzzes outside my high-rise apartment, and sounds of morning from neighbors and family invade my thoughts. I plug in my favorite music and continue to write until my mind says enough.
Harriet Beecher Stowe
Daphne Du Maurier
E. B. White
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