I’ve read many authors have a special place they go to get their inspiration. In his later years, Mark Twain had a small garden cottage on his property that he would use for his writing. Stephen King has an upstairs office in his house where he whips up best selling novels handwritten on yellow legal pads. I think every writer has a place they call their own, a place they can go to unleash their creativity to its fullest.
Right now, my place is Burger King.
It wasn’t always that way. I remember being very prolific in study hall. I wrote scripts and stories, jotted down poems and drew pages of cartoons. My senior year in high school, I even took an extra study hall. My counselor thought I was insane, but I cranked out material by the notebook-ful. In college I went underground – literally. The radio station I worked at was in the basement of Weston Hall at the University of Illinois. I believe I spent whole weeks, possibly months entombed in the windowless studios of news and production. When I got a “real” job at the phone company, I just wrote while sitting in my cubicle (it wasn’t like I had anything else better to do). Since then it’s been harder to find a place of my own. And time is a big challenge. Believe it or not, my family takes an awful lot of my time! My output around the year 2000 dwindled down to journal entries and even they ceased to be a daily activity when I stopped having any kind of routine in my day when I became a consultant.
A few months ago, I made the decision to try and write regularly again. This was easier said than done. I have my own office, but I spend too much time in there as it is with work. I tried sitting at the kitchen table. I liked the light, but couldn’t escape the siren-song of HDTV tempting me from the family room.
Daniel started Cub Scouts and has sports practice of various flavors during the week. I started carrying a notebook with me; on the outside chance I had an inspiration on the sidelines. One night we stopped at our Burger King to pick up dinner. I eat fast. Daniel eats slowly. That gave me time to sit and jot down a blog entry. Now, it’s turned into a regular ritual. Daniel gets his toy and I get my muse along with a side order of fries and a bottomless Diet Coke.