Making the space

Yeah, right
Yeah, right

Author Susan Straight kicks off a series of essays in the Los Angeles Times about writers and career turning points. Straight writes movingly and honestly about….drum roll…fitting writing into real life.

First paragraph: I wrote the stories in my first book by hand, in these places: at the counter of the Mobil station where I worked in 1979, between customers, eating beef jerky and stale cashews out of the nut mix no one ever bought from the cloudy glass compartments beneath my notebook; sitting on a huge rock at the beach in Rosarito, Mexico, in 1983 after my husband fell asleep in the tiny hotel where we spent our two-night honeymoon, writing in my notebook; sitting at a card table in married student housing in 1984 in Amherst with the small blue Smith-Corona my mother had given me for high school graduation; in a pale green 1980-something Fiat with brakes that went out all the time, upon which occasion my husband would have me sit in the driver’s seat and pump the brakes while he was underneath the car in the gravel driveway of our house back in Riverside in 1988, and I held a notebook and pen, writing.

A wonderful essay that we’ll all relate to. Enjoy!



4 thoughts on “Making the space”

  1. Hi Tracy,
    Thanks for weighing in. I think that in one way or another, we’ve all been on the same blanket at some point. “Weirdest Places You’ve Written” could be a great post. Are you interested in being a guest blogger on Write Despite? Poll your writing friends and put together a list? We’d love to have you!

  2. Perhaps you should have a Weirdest Places You’ve Written callout. Mine? In the woods, stretched out on a blanket on a beautiful spring day. The weird part? I was bawling my eyes out while I wrote, describing how the short story I’d just submitted to my writer’s workshop had been ripped to shreds. Okay not so much weird as pathetic I guess. And probably not my best writing effort that day.​

  3. Writers have always written in crazy spaces and places. Great works have lit have been created this way. Rare is the individual with the time, money, space, and TALENT to make the process more comfortable

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