Monday, February 1, 2010

I'm Writing on a Jet Plane

It’s very very cold here, and even though I love the cold weather because I can do things like cross country skiing (which I’m still sore from skiing yesterday), I have sunny futures in my head.

I have a trip to Florida planned for the start of April. These next two months can’t go by fast enough. I’m ready for a nine days sitting by the pool and reading (I already have a few new books planned out!).

The trip isn’t the only thing I’m looking forward to. I always love the flights, because airplanes are one of my best work spaces. Crazy? Maybe, but let me explain to you why.

The hustle and bustle of the airport before the flight leaves always inspires me. I’ll often pull out my notebook and start writing with the many other people who are working around me. There are men in suits have important business conversations on their phones, partners talking about a conference they are heading to or people frantically typing on their laptops. I know that a lot of people go to an airport for vacation, but I always try to find a space near people who are working. I like the intensity they all have, trying to finish up business before they have to get on the plane and all their connection to the “digital world” is lost.

I try not to travel with my laptop because I have my tote bag and a big digital SSL camera. A laptop is just too heavy, and I hate having to pull it out during the security screening. I handwrite everything first, but sometimes it’s hard to actually sit down and do that. Air travel forces me to. I like the little space I’m in, the pull down desk and the time to write and write and write. I’ll either listen to my IPod or let the hum and movement of the plane lull me into a writing coma.

When I was in graduate school, I commuted back and forth from Boston every few weeks (because of a main squeeze who ended up being very sour). I logged a lot of air time and I got a lot of work done. I started to look at my time on the airplane as time to write and produced large amount of writing on those flights.

Back then it was just me traveling, but now I usually travel with my main squeeze. However, the two of us are in a position on the flights where talking with each other isn’t easy. We do something really dorky. He’s really tall and I hate being stuck between people on a flight, so when we travel together, we always get two aisle seats across from each other. It’s kind of funny, and the people in the middle seats almost always ask if we want to switch seats, so we can sit by each other. We get a lot of funny looks when we explain our reasons for traveling the way we do.

I’ve always looked forward to some good airplane writing (some of my best scenes were written on planes). I always hope I don’t sit by someone who wants to talk!

What about you? Are there any odd places that you like to write?


AchingHope said...

Well, I like sitting on the floor, so when I was in Borders the other day instead of sitting on the chairs like a normal person I squashed myself between a chair and the wall. Some woman was looking at me strange but I was very comfortable. I need to find some times where I can go there again :)

Emilia Joyce Plater said...

Hey, I recently had two ten-hour flights. I SWORE I'd either a) do homework or b) write... but I couldn't focus at all. Spent most of each of them staring out the window haha. I wish I was as versatile as you! (:

P.S. If you're ever flying and you see a harried-looking lady with gray roots and too much stuff in her purse... STAY AWAY. It's my mom. She'll talk at you. For the whole flight. Oh yes.

Anabel said...

I like writing on a plane but for different reasons.
1. It takes my mind off actually being on a plane, I'm so afraid of flying, mostly the take-off and landing part (when I can't have my laptop out).
2. The closed space makes me think and this makes my imagination go crazy. Hmm... maybe I should fly all day everyday to finish my stories.

Brooke said...

I also love writing on flights. Well, I used to...and then I became a mother. I've flown 6 international (10-14 hr) flights in the past 6 months, and what I wouldn't give to be able to whip out my notebook and write in the air. I guess I can look forward to that twenty years from now '>