Day 302. Part Two

Yesterday I took my cue from a “daily prompt” and talked about getting lost in the zone while doing simple daily activities.  I talked about washing dishes, and how alonewater always causes me to zone out.

Truth is, it’s not just water that does it to me.  But my story turned out to be longer than I originally intended and I didn’t want to take too much of your time.  So I decided I’d write the rest of the story today.

When my writing is going well which, thankfully, it usually does, I get totally caught up in it.  And it’s not a new phenomenon.  It didn’t just start when I began freelancing.  It was the same when I went to an agency every day and worked full time.

Even when I was a partner in a start up and we had an open concept office — none of us had private offices — nothing ever distracted me.  I was completely unaware of what was going on around me.  I didn’t notice anyone coming or going.  I didn’t hear phones ringing or the door opening and closing.  I didn’t hear people talking.  Or laughing.  I didn’t know whether the TV was on or off.  Whether music was playing or not.  Most of the time I was totally unaware someone may have been standing over me, trying to get my attention.  I was that absorbed.

But only when I was writing.  If I was reading or doing other work it wasn’t the same.  But the minute I worked on copy, I was in another world.

And it was the same throughout my career.  I never knew what time it was.  Or whether it had gotten dark outside.  Or whether I’d worked right through lunch.  In fact, it would usually be 8:00 or 9:00 or even 10:00 o’clock, at night, when I’d suddenly look up from my computer and find I was the only one left in the office.  That, I have to say, I found a little creepy.  I never liked being alone, in the office, late at night.  But it usually happened because I was so caught up in what I was doing, I didn’t realize everyone had left.  Despite them always stopping by to say “Good night” to me.

Although, after a gal a friend of mine knew very well was murdered in her office after hours, I made it a point to take my work home with me.  Believe it or not, her office was not even a half block away from mine.  There was a cafe in the lobby of her office building where I used to buy my coffee every morning.  She’d gone in on a weekend to get some work done, and just like that, her life was snuffed out.  They caught the guy.  It was the building janitor.  But it didn’t bring her back, unfortunately.

That put an end to my staying late at the office on my own.  But not to getting lost in the words.

Where I am, when I’m writing, doesn’t matter.  The outcome is always the same.  The minute the words start to flow, I’m gone.  It doesn’t matter if I’m home.  Or at Starbucks.  Or sitting on a bench in the park.  On a plane.  On a train.  Or at a client’s office.  When I’m in front of my computer, I’m totally oblivious to everything but what I’m doing.  I’m only aware of the words on the screen.  To the thoughts and ideas in my mind.  And, like with water, it completely relaxes me.  I’m calm.  Peaceful.  Loving every minute.  Co-workers always used to tell me they liked to watch me work, because I always had a smile on my face.

I know this sounds very la-la land, but it’s almost as if I become one with my computer.  Nothing else exists.  Just the story.  The characters.  The dialogue.  The rhythm of the words.  The drama.  The humour.  The memories.  The sentiment.  The joy.  The sorrow.  The idea.  The point.  The moment.  Whatever I’m sharing or explaining or remembering or recounting.

Hopefully it will always be thus.  Because to have something to turn to, that brings life to a screeching halt, while I’m engrossed in doing what I love to do, is the most wonderful gift I could ever receive.

Writing makes me happy.  And no matter how many hours I’m at it, I’m never tired when I finally call it a day.  Or a night.  I’m always refreshed.  And rejuvenated.  And still I’m always glad to come back down to earth.  To the world around me.  It is, after all, where my ideas come from.

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12 thoughts on “Day 302. Part Two

  1. I’m coming to the conclusion that I am definitely more of a reader than a writer! I get like that when I’m reading – I still remember being at school and realising I was the only person left in the classroom. Everyone else had gone to wherever it was we were supposed to be going at the end of break but I was still reading my book! I’m trying to become more of a writer too…

    • Yes, good books have the same effect on me. As a kid I would drive my mother nuts because she’d be shouting for me to come to dinner and I wouldn’t hear a word she was saying because I was buried in a book 🙂

  2. Sadly, I am easily distracted, maybe because I always do my creative work at home with my children around…and at school I don’t have a private space to get creative, although, when I paint, time could stand still or fly by and I would not feel it of course until I came out of the hypnotic state and abruptly realize my children have not done their homework or worse off, have not had lunch, yikes… I am desperate for a space and a moment where I can just let creativity flow in which ever manner it may be, either writing or painting… You are so lucky Fransi to be able to get into ‘the zone’ :)… alexandra

    • It sounds like it’s what happens when you paint. It doesn’t make you less of a writer if you don’t zone out. You are still creating, still sharing, still giving pleasure to those who read you. And hopefully you are getting pleasure from doing it.

  3. From the Urban Dictionary:
    3. word

    A versatile declaration, originating (more or less) in hip-hop culture.

    “Word” has no single meaning, but is used to convey a casual sense of affirmation, acknowledgement, agreement, or to indicate that something has impressed you favorably.

    Its usage among young blacks has been parodied ad nauseam among clueless suburban whites.
    “Come on, man, we’re going to the store.”
    “Word.”

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