Thursday, January 17, 2013

Favorite writing places

When I first moved to the UK, I worked an administrative job that involved a lot of travel. Over time, I became increasingly frustrated with the job's limitations, but I never stopped loving the train trips all over the country. Even better, I was always paid for my time, and instead of a day in the office, I could sit in the quiet coach for hours, watching the green fields dotted with sheep and stone walls fly past, and work on my writing. Even after I (finally!) left that job, I looked forward to train travel. Indeed, part of the excitement of a trip down to London was simply the three hours in the train.

To me, train time feels like free time, time unencumbered by expectation. I can't clean the house or tackle my to do list. Really, I can only read, write, and stare into space. That freedom has led to some of my best thinking and writing. I'm grateful to be on the East Coast now, and to still have train travel (though less frequently!) in my life.

I've been thinking about good places to write because I'm going to be away from the blog for the next few weeks, and I'm anticipating a new and lovely writing situation. Let's hope so, because Project Fun needs a lot of revision work! And of course, I promise when I return I'll share all the details of my mysterious absence.

In the meantime, is there a place or situation in which your writing thrives?

*Of course I had to include this picture (taken by me), of the train arriving in Goathland, North Yorkshire, which was used in the Harry Potter films as the setting for Hogsmeade.  


  1. You made me wistful, remembering Europe's trains...
    For actual putting words to paper/computer file, I need to be *home*, phone turned off, sometimes even wearing headphones (also turned off, just to block sound) and no one talking to me...
    But as to ideas for stories coming in, nothing beats driving alone in the car, radio off. Had train rides been part of my routine that might have served even better.

    1. I once heard author Marcus Sedgwick talk about when he used to be a book rep, and had to drive all over the country. It killed his writing time until he learned to turn the radio off. He was amazed at all the ideas that came to him. It's amazing how much head space can be found in silence, isn't it?

  2. I plan on trying out the quiet study room in the library in the city soon. My goal is to go once a week while the kidlet is in school. My favorite place to write though is at the dining room table, facing the window, so I can look out at the view when I pause.

    happy travels!!

    1. Yeah, I really can't decide if a good view is a boon or not! My old dining room table writing situation looked out over a school, and that was terrible. I eagerly watched so many after school fights and drama!

      Good luck at getting yourself to the library!


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