Where I write
I’m a traveling writer who practices a disciplined routine. Now, the place changes, but time is constant. This is a result of the years I stole time and places to write while maintaining my practice as a psychotherapist and raising three kids. I wrote in between patients in my office. In the afternoons, I scribbled on scrap paper in ballet, theater, ice-skating viewing rooms, and in my car waiting for my kids to finish track, field hockey, soccer, football, clarinet, saxophone practice. I didn’t have time for writer’s block.
I still move around while I write, though it’s seasonal. During most of the year, I write at my desktop, the spacious counter cluttered with handwritten ideas, books, a frame of revolving digital photos of my family, and a vertical file crammed with important pending items many of which are long over due, and a horizontal file with stamps, scale, catalogues, old stories. Behind me, books are piled two, sometimes three deep.
As soon as it gets warm, I move my laptop into my unheated screened porch. It juts out over the forest so oak and aspen trees surround it. In fact, spring, summer and fall, I pretty much live in this one room.
On sunny mornings, the light slanting through the trees inspires an awe that quickens the writing. I stare at the birds; the wind waves the branches at me, my fingertips write down the images in my mind that play out on the leaves.
In Michigan winters, clouds hang a bleak grey that can be socked in for weeks. This last winter, I escaped for a beach in California and wrote sitting by the sea.
Regardless of the place, my routine is always the same. The sun wakes me. I grab espresso coffee, and sit before my computer. I write at least five days a week. If I’m lucky, regardless of where I am, images and dialogue are played out before me as though I’m taking dictation when in actuality it all occurs in my own mind. But every morning, regardless of whether the words flow or drip like an annoying faucet, I work until noon. Of course I take breaks for breakfast, to feed my cat, to move. And regardless of whether the words flow faster than I can type or like molasses, the day is meaningful because I tried.
This blog first appeared on My Shelf Confessions where April said, “I’m particularly pleased to share her post with you because like me she’s from Michigan and I may just be a bit prejudiced but I think this is probably my favorite Where You Write that we’ve gotten yet! So enjoy and welcome Ann!” Thank you, April.