Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Tools of the Trade: Venue

This is my favorite time of day to write: in the hour or two just before and after dawn. Perhaps it's because my thoughts seem less tangled at this time; perhaps it's because my vocabulary is notably different at this hour (it degrades as the day wears on); perhaps it's just because, with five kids, this is the only time it's really quiet around here.

I know a writer who can only write in crowded and noisy coffee shops, and another who prefers to dictate to a tape recorder while driving. Most serious writers I know write on computers in their offices by a fairly regular workday schedule, but this is a luxury that comes with success.

Me? Because I compose and develop in two distinct steps, my favorite way to scribble the Ur-draft is in longhand, while sitting at the dining room table with a mug of coffee close at hand, watching the sun rise over the pasture. I need to have warm feet while I'm doing this, but fortunately, one of the dogs is usually willing to attend to this detail.

What works for you, and why?