Monday, December 13, 2010

On Night-Writing: Confessions of a 2am Writer

Today, I decided I would switch things up a little by spending some time writing/revising at my local library. I did this for several reasons:
  1. This particular branch of the library doesn't have WiFi. Apparently, they're "fixing it," but they were "fixing it" last time I was there, and the time before that...for several months now. Honestly, I am totally OK with this, because...
  2. The Internet is distracting, You all are out there, with your bright, shiny Twitter objects and sparkly new blog entries and glittery YouTube videos, and when I'm at home I think, "Maybe I'll take a five minute break." And an hour and a half later, I'm Googling "Kitten Mittens" and wondering why I turned my computer on in the first place.
  3. Also, in some kind of evil twist of the universe, my official last day of employment (I was recently laid off) has collided with the cold-weather Apocalypse here in Florida. And I know that your Northerners are laughing because it's "only" 38 degrees here right now, but our heater is broken. So though it's 40 outside, it's also 55 inside. (I'm not even making that up. That's what my thermostat says.) So I wake up every morning and I'm snuggled in the blankets, and my dogs (who have an internal temperature of 101 degrees) are cuddled next to me, and I see no reason to get out of bed, or get dressed, or go anywhere aside from the couch or the bedroom. So I end up staying in my PJs all day. Like a bum. So I needed to get out of the house.
Hence, my trip to the Dunedin Public Library. I had a nice hearty (read: warm) breakfast and chose my favorite comfy chair (with convenient attached swivel-desk), pulled at my revision notes and...


Well, almost nothing.

I'm not even exaggerating when I say that it took me three hours - three hours! - to revise a chapter that was actually pretty simply. I knew where I wanted to go with it and I had all my notes planned. I just needed to get the words out. I finally finished the chapter and packed up, wondering where my time had gone and what went wrong.

Because if it had been 1am, I guarantee I would have had that chapter revision banged out in 40 minutes, flat.

I'm not sure what it is about the nighttime that I find makes it so much easier for me to get the words out. But I will struggle and struggle all day long, then as soon as the sun goes down (which, thankfully, is quite a bit earlier these days) - BAM! My fingers can't stop moving. It drives the hubs crazy because I come to bed at 2, 3, sometimes even 4am (which is hilarious on the nights that he's waking up at 4 - he's just getting up as I'm going to bed. So by hilarious I mean kind of sad.) I would really love the muse to come to me at a normal hour, but she must be off hanging out with some of you folks.

I'm going to try to tempt her, though. Most reputable places aren't open super late, at the kind of places that are...well, let's just say they don't make for very pleasant backdrops for writing your children's book. I'll keep trying to write it out during the day, and we'll see if we can't turn this night-writer into a day-writer.

I'd love to hear from you...When do you write best?


  1. I'm the same way - it's REALLY hard for me to write during the day time I think because I keep thinking of things I should be doing. But at night, there's really nothing else to do, so I just type away. I think this is why I'm not very good at NaNo: because you actually have to write when the sun's up to get 50k words. lol

  2. Oh man, I know exactly what you mean. I am not a morning writer - I work best from about 7 PM to 2 or 3 AM. Not sure how that will work with a 9-5 work schedule, but we'll see!

  3. I love writing at the library and for the longest time had a planned "library day." The schedule has been a bit of a mess lately and I miss going...can't wait to get back to it. I'm a day night time I can't think anymore.

  4. I have a hard time at night because I get so sleepy and I CAN'T stay up late. I try, but I can't. And once I start yawning I can concentrate anymore.

  5. dude, I'm the SAME WAY. I write so much better at night... between the hours of, like, 9:30ish through 3:30ish. One of my CPs lives in the area and we have daytime writing parties and I get 1000 words done in about seven or eight hours, lol. If we did it at night, I'd do that in like two!

  6. Maybe we're all just night owls. I work best at night, too, doing homework or writing lesson plans or whatever. We're just "on" at night - like a light bulb.

  7. I'm best at night too! Like, ten and later. I've always been that's a little inconvenient. :)

  8. Dude, same here. I'm all over 3AM.

    Also, I send you blankets! *sends*

  9. I'm definitely a night writer too. I get almost all of my words in between 10 pm and 2 am when my hubby and my little guy are tucked into bed. It's the only time of the day when I can tune out everything else and just focus on writing.

  10. I am NOT a night person. I write best after lunch and before dinner. 7pm comes around and my brain's ready for bed.

  11. Eeeeks- yay you are back! I missed your posts.

    Good idea going to the library to get some writing done. I've gone to Barnes and Noble (damn you wifi!) but never my library.

    I used to be a night writer but that was before my work schedule had me waking up so early. Now I'm still trying to figure out the best time for me to write.


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