So I went up to my usual hangout last night, and wrote about 1000-1250 words while various people came and went, stopped by to chat, and hung out. I've mentioned before that I usually handwrite my stuff first, in chunks, then transfer it to the computer.
Also, I did a crossword.
Now, let me just say, I love my hangout. I love my friends. And I love, love, LOVE handwriting. Writing is a very tactile process for me--the feel of the paper, that crisp noise that happens as you turn a page, the flow of the words as I write them. LOVE it. And writing this way also offers the benefit of revision prior to revision--that is, I tend to revise as I type, so what ends up on the computer is sort of a second draft before I even finish the novel.
So, yeah. LOVE it.
There are, however, a few downsides here.
First of all, it's impractical and costly. I've gone through at least three 3-5 subject notebooks in the past year. At least. And I buy a lot of pens, too, because I love to write with a particular type of pen.
Downside number two: I'm a smoker. Still. When I try to quit, I do okay, until I get really lonely and need to go up to the hangout to write/socialize. I'm a very social person, and that doesn't mesh well with the solitary-writer-sitting-in-front-of-the-computer thing.
Downside number three: I drink a lot of coffee while I'm there. I usually switch to decaf after a few hours, so that I don't get my old caffeine twitch and lay in bed for two hours once I get home, hearing imaginary serial killers breaking into the house. Yeah, I'm really sensitive to caffeine. It's not fun.
So, since we're moving out of state for the summer, I've decided that this is the perfect time to make a few changes. I started on Chantix--the pill that makes your brain not love nicotine--yesterday. I'm already seeing changes...I went from noon to 7 yesterday without a smoke, and I didn't even really want one. And I'll be writing at home when we move, which will be easier (I hope) since it'll be a whole new environment in which I have only one friend, who is a non-smoker. New state, new town, new apartment...new habits.
I'll try to keep ya'll* updated on my progress via the good ol' blog. Wish me luck. But more importantly, wish The Husband luck...he's the one who will be living with a lonely, nicotine-craving, slightly crazy writer.
*See? I'm already adjusting to the new environment, and I'm not even in it yet!
If you don't feel that you are possibly on the edge of humiliating yourself, of losing control of the whole thing, then possibly what you are doing isn't very vital. If you don't feel like you are writing somewhat over your head, why do it? If you don't have some doubt of your authority to tell this story, then you are not trying to tell enough. --John Irving