Before the image of me typing away while doing 70mph down the interstate, mowing down cars (which let’s face it, with my vehicle it’s possible) burns into your mind, let me explain what I mean when I say writing while driving.
Over the course of the last year and nine months that I have been writing my novel, some of my best scene ideas have been thought of, my worst brick walls broken through, and my best revisions dreamed up, while driving to work and back home. Playing one of a few instrumental CD’s my brain synapses begin firing, and I think about what I need to add or delete. I ask myself questions that perhaps a reader would ask, and when I hit a brick wall (and there have been many) I think about different things that could happen, different places I could take the story. Bottom line is probably about half of the novel has been written while inside my vehicle.
While it is nice that traffic is less stressful and coming across an accident that has the freeway backed up means more time to write. I have since discovered, there is a downside to writing while driving. In getting caught up of reaching that pivotal moment of success, I often forget where I am and that is where the problem starts. I clap excitedly, bounce up and down in my seat, fist pump, or clasp my hands together and thank God I have worked my way through another wall. I have done all of these, and I have done them not only on the freeway in stop and go traffic but on side streets…..with other drivers…..usually sitting next to me at stoplights.
Have you ever been walking in a crowd of people when you all of a sudden realize that you are going in the wrong direction? Too embarrassed to turn around you either start rooting through your purse, pretending to look for something so you can fake the ‘Darn, must have left it in the car’ routine and turn around or pretend someone calls you on the phone and say, “Now!? Really, do you really need me to come now? Alright I will be there in a minute, let me turn around and get back to my car.” Well when you are in the car already and the people around you cannot hear you those little side show acts well… they just don’t work. A few times I have thought of getting a bumper sticker made that reads: “Writing a book, thinking about it while driving, ignore my outbursts.” But for the most part, I don’t think people would really understand what I was trying to even say. Not to mention I would have to paste the sticker to every square inch of my vehicle – the bumper just wouldn’t cut it.
So if you live in Oklahoma and see a lady driving a big charcoal Yukon fist pumping, that would be me…in all my writing while driving glory.