When and Where Do You Do Your Best Writing?

I do my best writing when it’s quiet, very quiet. I like to write late at night and into the early morning hours when no one is asking me for anything, the phone isn’t ringing, and there isn’t a lot of loud traffic in the street. I’m not hungry late at night, so I don’t get distracted by going into the kitchen and preparing or eating a snack.

I’m most productive when there is no noise in my head. I don’t have a particular room to write in. In winter months when it’s cold, my home isn’t insulated well, so I write in a room that is warm, or I put a lap blanket over me. I like looking out a window into darkness.

In late spring, summer, and fall, I often do my writing in my head, when I’m out walking, or when I’m sitting on the sand along the shores of Lake Michigan. I always carry a notepad, so that I can jot down thoughts. Late at night, I write up those notes into a piece.

Sometimes, when I ride the train, it’s not rush hour, and I’m alone in a back car, I can do some thoughtful writing of short poetry like haiku.

Some of my writer-friends go into a coffee shop in mid-afternoon when it isn’t crowded and do their writing there. At night, after their family has gone to bed, they write on the dining room table.

Writing in a coffee shop isn’t for me. I don’t like to be known as “a regular” in public places. And somehow, I wouldn’t want strangers there to guess that I’m a writer, nor would I want the employees asking me about what I’m writing.

When and where do you do your best writing? Please post your comments. You just might give some fellow writers
some ideas that will make them more productive.

About Charlotte Digregorio

I publish books. I have marketed and/or published 55 titles. These books are sold in 46 countries to bookstores, libraries, universities, professional organizations, government agencies, and book clubs. In 2018, I was honored by the Governor of Illinois for my thirty-eight years of accomplishments in the literary arts, and my work to promote and advance the field by educating adults and students alike. I am the author of seven books including: Haiku and Senryu: A Simple Guide for All; Everything You Need to Know About Nursing Homes; You Can Be A Columnist; Beginners' Guide to Writing & Selling Quality Features; Your Original Personal Ad; and my latest, Ripples of Air: Poems of Healing. The first four books have been adopted as supplemental texts at universities throughout the U.S., Canada, India, Pakistan, and Catalonia. They are sold in 43 countries, and are displayed in major metropolitan cultural centers. These books have been reviewed, recommended, and praised by hundreds of critics, librarians, and professors worldwide. I am also the author of a poetry collection: "Shadows of Seasons: Selected Haiku and Senryu by Charlotte Digregorio." Two of my books have been Featured Selections of Writer's Digest Book Club. I am regularly interviewed by major print, radio, and television organizations throughout the U.S. I regularly sign books at libraries, chain bookstores, and university bookstores, and do poetry readings at art centers, cafes, tea houses, and galleries. I was recently nominated for two Pushcart Prizes in poetry. I have won fifty-nine poetry awards, writing fourteen poetic forms. My poetry has been translated into eight languages. I do illustrated solo poetry exhibits 365 days a year in libraries, galleries, corporate buildings, hospitals, convention centers, and other venues. My individual poems have been displayed at supermarkets, apparel and wine shops, banks, botanic gardens, restaurants, and on public transit. I have been nominated and listed in "The International Authors and Writers Who's Who" in Cambridge, England and in the "Who's Who In Writers, Editors & Poets U.S./Canada." I hosted my own radio program, "Poetry Beat," on public broadcasting. My poetry has been featured on several library web sites including those of Shreve Memorial Library in Louisiana and Cornell University's Mann Library. My background includes positions as a feature editor and columnist at daily newspapers and as a magazine editor. I have been a public relations director for a non-profit organization. I am self-employed as a public relations/marketing consultant, having served a total of 118 clients in 23 states for the past several decades . In other professional areas, I have been on university faculties, teaching French, Italian, and Writing. I regularly give lectures and workshops on publishing, journalism, publicity, poetry, and creativity to business and professional groups, and at writer's conferences, universities, literary festivals, non-profit organizations, and libraries. I have been a writer-in-residence at universities. There have been about 400 articles written about me in the media. I have served on the Boards of writers and publishers organizations. My positions have included Board Secretary of the Northwest Association of Book Publishers. I served for five years as Midwest Regional Coordinator of The Haiku Society of America, and for two years as its Second Vice President.
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4 Responses to When and Where Do You Do Your Best Writing?

  1. Very rarely have I sat down and said “Now I will think up cartoons about alligators” for example. I put the topic in my head and ideas will evolve over several days. So I never have a setting, a mood, an atmosphere, a time of day when I produce cartoons. There is no “enter into the zone” protocol. As a matter of fact, cartoon ideas seem to just explode from nowhere. I have to keep a notepad on my person at all times to jot down a word or two which will help me remember the idea and then develop it in sketches later. It is almost as there exists some external pipeline feeding my brain. I cannot explain it. I laugh at my own jokes, sometimes, because it seems some one else was the author, not me, and I am laughing at their stuff, not mine. Some ideas come in dreams and I have been able to train myself to wake up long enough to put a few words on a pad for morning wake up.

  2. I dream of having an office with a door with a lock. As it is, I have a couch in the living room with no door and no privacy so I usually stay up late after the rest have gone to bed and write. However, I don’t control when creativity strikes and sometimes I think I’m going to go mad trying to write with all the distractions of the day. I do like to listen to music when I’m writing sometimes – earbuds in, rock on. I just have to be careful not to get caught up in the song! Enjoyed this post very much 🙂

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