Thursday, May 18, 2017

My writing office

I have been writing for 30 years in great measure because I enjoy being alone 
(I’m an only child with no sisters, brothers or even a dad).
I am a loner, but I’m fine with that. I also love to type and have since I was 18 and took an adult education typing course.

My minimum daily word count when I’m writing a novel is 1,500 words a day, which is sometimes easy to achieve, and is sometimes, not. However, I make myself stay at my laptop until I've hit 1,500 because that’s the only way the book will be written. Those 1,500 words might be nonsense and are usually crappy. However, I can make them better in the rewrite. 

When I begin each morning, five days a week, I cruise Facebook and Twitter, check my email and start writing by 10 a.m. I reread what I had written the day before just to get my motor running. I get my coffee, open the blinds onto the courtyard and set my timer for 90 minutes.

At the end of the 90 minutes, I take a break of about 10 minutes and then do another 90 minutes. I take 45 minutes for lunch and get in two more 90-minute sessions by the end of my day.

Total writing time: about six hours a day, five days a week. Over a three-month span, my 1,500 daily words amount to 90,000 words, a good secret draft for a novel.

I am able to devote almost all my time to writing because my dear wife, Lori, has worked so hard for us through the years. From middle school English teacher, to public relations director for an organ donor organization to the nanny work she loves. She gently cares for children while their parents must be away all day to pay the bills. Without out her work, I would not be able to write all day. (Thanks, Lori.) I’ve been working since I was 18 years old but now I am too old for anyone to hire me. Thanks to Lori’s pulling more than her weight, I am able to get back to writing.

I’ve had about a dozen writing offices since 1984, always on a computer.

These days, my writing office is an HP Pavilion 17 Notebook PC running Windows 10 and MS Office 2016 on a laptop desk with a comfortable chair and a pillow for lumbar support. The HP 2540 inkjet printer is a foot away. There are two clocks immediately in front of me, and a framed cover of my first book and my storyboard bulletin board on the wall. 

A Chinese paper Zen lamp illuminates my keyboard.
A window into the apartment complex courtyard is two feet to my right.
I usually listen to music as I write. I play Pandora One radio (available for $5 a month) through the speakers affixed to the bottom of the laptop table. I tune it to jazz (Hammond B3, Cool, Smooth or Combo). When trying to intensely concentrate, I play Classical Relaxation or Calm Meditation radio. When writing fiction, I often tune to Soundtracks radio because it’s evocative music. No vocals. I cannot write with words being sung at me.

Above from the book NOVEL SECRETS,
available for Kindle:

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Lary Crews