30 Days of Writing: Day Six

Where are you most comfortable writing? At what time of day? Computer or good ol’ pen and paper?

My absolute favorite place to write is in coffee shops, though I don’t get to do this as often as I’d like.  The grinding of the espresso machines and background chatter sends me into a zone where I can lose track of time writing. 

I’m a night person so the ideal writing time for me is night/early morning when my third wind has kicked in.  Since work life makes vampire hours not the best choice, I find myself writing at a variety of different times.  Early morning is harder because my brain doesn’t snap completely awake until later in the morning.

On Jon’s blog, he had the cool idea to do a hand written post.  That idea took me back to the high school and college memories of composition books, spiral notebooks and bookstore-bound journals filled with my poems and stories.  That’s what writers did – we wandered around with pen and paper in our bags, at the ready for when a moment or idea struck and needed to be recorded.  I thought nothing of writing page after page by hand.  I could cross out passages or circle and arrow mark others to be moved.  Write in the margins.  I had a habit of rewriting favorite song lyrics or poems on the inside front and back covers (Emily Dickenson’s Parting and Prince’s The Cross are two I remember using). 

I’m not sure if my writing flows better with a pen in hand or fingers on my keyboard.  I carry around a mini-journal in my purse and other notebooks in my writing bag.  When an idea strikes, that is what I reach for to record it.  Yet my laptop is what I now perch at when actually writing.  It could be a matter of convenience – I type faster than I write longhand.  Typing first also alleviates having to decipher pages of my chicken scrawl later.  Editing while writing is also quicker and easier with technology.

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4 Responses to 30 Days of Writing: Day Six

  1. Jonathan says:

    Thanks for the link 🙂 I like to think I write better on paper (somehow it seems more honest, if you can see the scribbled edits – or more “raw”), but the reality is I type faster, and the result is more polished on the computer…

    • Barbara says:

      You are welcome Jon! I am still considering if I’ll scan in and post an example of my hand scrawl. My sister once told me it looked like the writing of a crazy person so I hesitate on the chance of getting formally analyzed. :-0 I love how you used the word “honest.” Yes, I think that is what writing by hand felt like…an honest extension of myself to the paper.

  2. I can’t say whether I’m a night or day person. I do tend to stay up later than is good for my schedule, but I’m best at writing in the morning. I think that’s because my body and my left brain is still asleep. I don’t work outside the home, so I dearly hate when I have to jump out of bed and get ready to leave the house. It puts me in a bad mood for the whole day. But I almost always wake and go straight to the computer to write, even if it’s only to write a blog post or respond to email. It’s best though when I can write fiction, sometimes carrying over a feeling or even a situation from a dream.

    Writing by hand? Well, my handwriting was never very good, but deteriorated after I broke a bone in my writing hand a couple years ago. Not only is it physically uncomfortable to handwrite, but frustrating when I try to decipher it later.

    Gee, this was all about me, wasn’t it? Sorry. But I am enjoying your 30 Days of Writing posts. 🙂

    • Barbara says:

      Glad you are enjoying the posts Linda! I don’t look ahead to the questions for each day, so I’m surprised myself at some of my answers. Like I’d forgotten about the runaway play and the first short story I’d written. Sorry to hear about the broken hand bone and discomfort. I can relate to the frustrations of deciphering. Before I switched to mostly writing on the computer, I would have pages of work that just sat because I couldn’t figure out the words for what I’d even meant to say.

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