Computer Couch Potato (Ouch!)

scottfeldstein / Foter / CC BY

I can write anywhere – on a napkin at the coffee shop, on some borrowed notebook paper in a temporary classroom, on snatches of paper I find in my purse. I would love to have an organization system that allows for that. In my mind, it’s a creative scrapbook of snatches of stories and ideas. My reality is a jumbled pile of napkins and receipts and half filled notebooks – unless you count my computer.

Most of my writing is done on my trusty laptop, sitting or lying on my couch. (Ultimate couch potato, right?) The TV is usually off (although the morning news usually piques some response from me). Sometimes I’ll have music playing, but it’s easier if it’s classical or instrumental only.

I used to love to put pen to paper. I have a stack of spiral notebooks to attest to this. However, I’m a pretty fast typist, and my hands have more of a chance to keep up with my brain if I type rather than write. I tend to find longhand slow and frustrating now, though it will do in a pinch.

I love the idea of sitting in a coffee shop with a pad of paper or my laptop, but the reality is that the people going in and out, the cars passing by on the road, not to mention the constant temptation to get up and buy just one more treat to keep me going would all conspire to distract the words right out of my head. Kudos to JK Rowling for being able to write in cafes. I think I need the boredom of my house, the familiar sounds of my own road that I can tune out, the presence of my dog by my side. My mental powers, such as they are, are at their peak at home. I am able to silence the pleading voices of the dishes in the sink, begging for attention. Dust builds on the furniture as I plunk away at the keyboard, oblivious. The sound of the front door as the kids or husband walk in is my ultimate quitting bell.

Maybe someday I will be that writer in the coffee shop, but for now, the couch beckons.

In response to Writing 101 – Where do you write?

Where do you write? Do you prefer blogging on your laptop in a coffee shop? Are you productive in a quiet room, door closed, away from civilization? Today, describe the space where you write. Or, if you donโ€™t have a dedicated place, what is your ideal setting?

Consider these questions to shape your post:

  • What are your writing habits?

  • What equipment or supplies do you use to write?

  • What do you need and want in a physical space?