Yep. You read that right.
I work a day job that’s a forty-one mile commute in each direction, and some of that is in heavy traffic (not a lot, thank goodness, but it adds up). All told, I commute about 45 minutes in the morning and over an hour in the evening. That’s a whole lot of time in the car to sit and think.
And ponder, and muse, and invent wild scenarios and indulge steamy daydreams. That’s actually just how my first book in the Seeder Saga began, with a steamy daydream about a celebrity that morphed into this science fiction fantasy with a really dominant guy who also happened to have a couple of gorgeous brothers.
I use the commute to help me think out loud when plotting my fanfics, too. The challenge with writing fanfic is that you have to write it chronologically, and (most importantly) you have to write it true to character voice. I pride myself on the fact that a good deal of my reviewers tell me that I am spot-on in the way I voice all the characters of Storybrooke, or that my fic could easily be a seasonal arc for the show. It means I’m doing it right and in a way that rings authentically for them.
I have these imaginary dialogues in the car or I talk out loud and say “Okay, if this happens, then that would happen next, which would really make this character feel ________.” People driving by must think I’m nuts – or maybe it just looks like I’m singing along to the radio or something – but the truth is, my characters are having an argument, or I need to brainstorm a really good plot convenience that doesn’t look like a plot convenience, or I’m trying to figure out how a plot twist I’ve just come up with affects the continuity of the piece.
So I’m actually grateful for my long-ass commute. It makes me a better writer. Where is your best writing done?