Monday, September 10, 2007

Upsetting the Writing Cart

Ok, readers, I'm going to ask you to do a little work today, keep reading for your assignment.
I've figured out another reason I haven't been as productive since our move. I previously thought it was actually what we came here for - the peace and quiet - that made me feel too relaxed.
But after a very productive week last week - one of the most productive since coming here - I know now that I am a "ducks in a row writer."
My husband was here for the week and he spent most of the time during the day out applying and interviewing for jobs.
I got tons done.
It was the first time in months that things seemed well, normal. I know now that I am a routine person. I need everything and everyone in its place before I can be at my best. This year has been so full of the out-of-the-ordinary, that I forgot what it felt like to have the ordinary - and when I did, I was able to complete several projects.
This is why writing in a coffee shop has never worked well for me.
So, here's your assignment: Are you a "ducks in a row writer?" Do you have to be in a certain place with certain things in alignment to write or can you take your laptop and write in a busy, crowded airport terminal?
I've made it as easy as possible to leave your comments. You don't even have to leave your name or sign in! And I know you're out there because I see the hit numbers everyday!


Anonymous Lucy Lauer said...

Hi Keri,
i recently moved also, to the beach, with the idea of creating more open space in my life; more space for fun, creativity, and outdoor activities. I intended to recreate my life so that I would have more time to write, which I do. Before I moved,I fantasized about entire days with no obligations or appointments when I would enter the zone and create moving prose. Each day I wake up with a twinge of dread that it will be too hard, too boring, too frustrating and in the end defeating. I find writing so hard, that I have to create a schedule to get any of it done. My "schedule" is pretty flexible. I write "every day" except Wed and Sat when I go to yoga, and Sundays when I "take off" and the occasional day when I get up before sunrise to walk on the beach and look for baby turtles (some how, getting up when it's dark exempts me from anything else that's difficult for the rest of the day!)
As much as I hate the idea of structure, and pretend that I love open, free time, the fact is, I require structure to get any writing done. I whine and complain about it, get up for a drink, a snack, to do laundry, etc., but I do set aside "every" morning to write. I also set specific goals for writing that change regularly depending on the level of discipline I can tolerate in any given week. When writing the first draft of my second novel, I met a quota of six pages a day. For a time, I wrote until noon. This week, it's 90 minutes on my 3rd draft each day.
Since i am also creating a counseling practice from scratch and marketing my first novel, I save the afternoon for those projects. I do journal every day, yoga, turtles or not. i use this writing to ponder writing dilemmas, but it does not "count" as real writing, because I could write "about" writing for the rest of my life and never publish another piece.

Walking on the beach is where i figure many things out. I carry a little notebook and a pen and when an idea bubbles up, I write it down. I can journal in Starbucks, but not "write". i can't even stand my husband's music playing when I work. (He also offices at home).

Best of luck with your move and writing practice.

10:29 AM CDT  

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