Writing can be a very delicate process. Any number of tiny, seemingly insignificant, factors can impede your word flow. Sometimes, it’s hard to concentrate because your environment is too hot or too cold. It’s too loud, or too quiet, or there’s some annoying intermittent noise. But then, every once in a while, everything is just perfect.

This winter, I found myself in a perfect storm of writing conditions:

  1. I have mornings free.
  2. It’s pretty chilly where I am, but it’s the desert, so almost every day starting around 9:30am, the sun shines on a slice of the outdoor patio.
  3. I can’t use my computer outdoors because of glare, but I am currently rough drafting a project old-school (writing longhand using pen and paper – more on that later), which is a process ideally suited to working outdoors.
  4. I am babysitting two dogs who love to lie in the sun, at least one of them in my lap if possible.
  5. I have a swiveling chair so, if the sun gets too hot, I can pivot away and create my own shade. Too chilly? I can turn back to the sun.
  6. By 1pm, the sun is gone and the patio returned to chilly shadows, so there is only a limited window of optimal conditions.

img_3016I don’t just want to go sit in the sun and write, I feel obligated to do it. It’s like the Universe has carved out a perfect time-place writing assignment for me, complete with a built-in deadline. I feel like not taking advantage of this perfect confluence of conducive conditions would be like spitting in the face of the Word Gods – and you don’t want to antagonize them!

So, every morning, as soon as the sun shines on that patio, the dogs and I hurry out and take our places – and word by word, page by page, a rough draft of my project is appearing. I just counted and I’ve produced over a hundred pages so far!

I race the sun every day, because I know the sun will be gone by 1pm, and that all too soon the planet’s alignment will shift and the perfect sun-shade configuration will no longer exist on the patio at all – but, if I hurry, it’s just possible that by then I will have finished this draft. Then, of course, I will have to re-read what I wrote and pray all those legal pads aren’t full of utter gibberish. Either way though, at least I’ll have something to rewrite.

Now, I see the sun is almost in alignment for today’s writing session, so I better end this post and go fill some pages. If I could just get my coffee the perfect temperature…