I'm totally in love with the idea of the mobile office these days. As my kids grow older and get more involved in activities for school and recreation, I find myself constantly on the move. My neighbor, who lives across the street and has a bird's eye view of my driveway, actually counts the number of times I climb into my mini-van and drop off and pick up children.
Because of my busy lifestyle (Remember, I have 4 teenagers and none of them drive yet.) I've had to learn how to write in short spurts of time. It's not uncommon for me to put in an hour of writing before the kids get up during the summer months. (Teenagers sleep very late.) And I usually give myself an hour mid-afternoon after they've had lunch but before my 16 year old boy comes into the room to tell me he's starving and there's nothing in the house to eat. (This always boggles my mind since my food bill is consistently over $250 a week.) My best time still seems to be when the kids are asleep. In between, I'm either tending to family stuff or I'm on the road carting the kids around. Cheerleading practice will be starting in a few weeks and I'll be back and forth to the school to drop off my daughter and then wait until the bus arrives after her games.
I used to regard this wait time as dead time for my writing. I couldn't be at the computer and I couldn't bring my desktop with me in the car. But in these days of laptops, Alphasmarts and PDAs, working on the road is far easier. Right now I'm in Florida on a family trip. The 3 hour flight down from New England was productive, thanks to my using my laptop on the plane. I'm not a white-knuckled flyer, but I do find I get a little bored just looking out the window if I don't have a good book to read. Having just returned from Dallas for the Romance Writer's of America conference, I have a suitcase full of good books. But this time I chose to write.
I wasn't sure if I was going to be able to really get into my story with so much going on in the plane. My girls were seated around me and the stewardess was moving up and down the aisle with complimentary sodas and coffee. (I decided to forego the drinks and save myself from the possible spillage on my laptop.) I was also surprised that I was able to drown out the noise of the plane and the chatter around me so that I could completely become engrossed in my story.
As you read this, I'm probably at DisneyWorld with my girls. I don't care how old I get, I still love Disney and the Magic Kingdom.
My next step is to get a good pocket digital recorder for those times I'm alone in the car and want to get some ideas down. I'm liking the mobile office a lot and it's a good thing. With 4 kids I'm on the road a lot!
Until next time, many blessings, Lisa