Jessica Day George

Saturday, February 2, 2008

My 13th Reality, or Livin' Large

So, I believe that I mentioned before I was reading an advance copy of James Dashner's The 13th Reality, the first book in the Journal of Curious Letters series. And now I've finished it. . . .


So for March, kiddies, look out for this book. It's a fun ride, full of riddles and some very exciting derring-do, including my personal dream: hoverbikes!

Why I call this post "my" 13th Reality, though, is because I have now joined the ranks of people I have always stared at, sometimes envied, but never truly understood.

People who have to leave home to find peace and quiet to write.

So, back before the Boy was born, obviously, silence was not a hot commodity at our house. I would work in the mornings, come home, and have hours to toodle around before my husband came home. I'd write, watch girlie movies and knit, whatever I wanted.

Then the Boy came.

I started having to wait until he napped to write, which sometimes didn't happen because he is not a good sleeper, even at the age of three. But eventually he does sleep, and we are lucky in that, at the age of three, he will still take a nap 4-5 times a week. Which is when I write, except when a) people call and I rush to answer because I didn't turn off the ringer, and then I end up chatting away my writing time, or b)I get distracted by something on the internet, or a book I'm reading, or I'm in the middle of cooking something or organizing something and by the time I'm done Boy is awake.

Lately this has been happening more and more, and I've been writing less and less. And I suddenly started to understand people like James Dashner, and Amy Finnegan, and other writer friends who go to libraries, or Barnes n Noble, or cabins, or hotels, to do some writing. What? I would scoff at them. Are you that fragile that you can't occasionally do a page or two while a toddler screamed and chased the dog in the background? (I have, in fact, often written when Boy was awake, simply tuning out the chatter and noise.)

But, without warning, I have become one of those people. As Boy's naps get shorter, I also find myself able to write less when he's awake, until I realized that we were reaching a point where one day I wouldn't be able to write at all.

I freaked.

So my husband sent me to Barnes n Noble.

And last Saturday, i sat in their cafe. And wrote. And wrote and wrote and wrote, and listened to music that wasn't from the Curious George soundtrack and didn't teach me the alphabet.

It was amazing.

This week I went to the library, which was, amazingly, noisier and more distracting. But still I wrote and wrote.

And thus it has been decided that every Saturday I will go somewhere, and write. Saving my sanity and finishing my projects, one weekend at a time.

(ps-I call this "livin' large" because this strangely feels like the "big time." And also because last night when I got back from writing at the library I got a package in the mail containing three copies of Dragon Slippers, in LARGE PRINT. )


Maribeth Kayla said...

YAY! Good luck with the writing! I see people in the cafe at B&N writing all the time. :D

Caryn said...

I love hearing about your life as a writer, although I'm sorry that you have to retreat to the library or Barnes and Noble in order to be as productive as you'd like.

And LOL on the comments on the Curious George soundtrack and learning the alphabet. Hilarious!

Anidori-Isilee said...

For's not so much where I write but how I write. I cannot write on a computer. Using my notebook is much quicker and more relaxing, but there's just too many distractions, such as the internet and solitaire. And so that I actually write, I have banished myself to the kitchen table with a my trusted pencil and a stack of looseleaf paper. And it works: I've written four pages today alone and totally want to write more.

But it's fun to write in a public place, like a cafe. The one time I had to take my notebook to a Starbucks and even though I only wrote a paragraph, I felt so professional.

Danyelle said...

I completely understand. I have three with one on the way. It's sometimes very difficult to find the time to write.