Another habit to develop is identifying a favorite writing place, one that allows us to achieve the utmost productivity.
And that can be anywhere. It is unique to each one of us. Many writers seem to enjoy writing at their neighborhood Starbucks. This doesn’t work for me. There are too many distractions and too much white noise (even with headphones). But if you like to write at Starbucks and it’s productive for you, then go for it. Ask yourself, am I achieving my writing goals for the session? If not, think about reassessing your location.
My most productive places outside my house are the public library, Panera Bread and Corner Bakery. The distractions are much more manageable for me.
My best writing spot is the writing room we established in my home. It has a table for my laptop and another table for spreading out my notes and research. There’s a futon for those times I need to stretch out and let the boys in the basement run around. I could always use more bookshelves, but that would mean filling them up. A comfortable writing chair and my grandmother’s rocking chair round out the room. I occasionally use the rocker for brainstorming, but I’m more likely to find one of my female characters sitting there, chatting with me and coaching me to get her scenes just right.
I have writing buddies who use the kitchen table when the family has settled for the night.
When I’m writing, I set a timer to remind me to stay on task. While the timer’s running, there’s no social media breaks, etc. I also use Scrivener which allows me to set a word goal for the session. Both are extremely helpful in staying focused.
The writing room reminds me writing is a job. I show up in the morning and put in my time. It’s not something I dabble in when it’s convenient or when I feel inspired.
I know many of you have pressures that I don’t. You may have a day job. Children and family responsibilities can never be neglected for long without dire consequences.
I encourage each of you to explore your world. Are there locations you can designate as your writing place? Even if it is the kitchen table before the kids get up or after they go to school. Maybe it’s your desk at work during the lunch hour. I have a friend who writes while her daughter is in gymnastics class. Options abound. Look at each place in your life as a potential writing location.
What’s the most successful writing place you’ve found?