One morning you woke up with a genius idea bubbling in your mind. Every bit of the scene was clear, from the character’s interactions, to its significance in the story. You woke an hour later than you usually do, but there is still quiet all around your neighborhood. You glide out of your sheets and open the blinds of your room. Rays of sunlight drift in through your windows and the morning is young. The time has some to write.
You shut yourself in your room with the doors locked, you turn on the air conditioner to keep that refreshing temperature, and you might even kick out a few siblings that are wandering about your room. You shoo away the dogs and you turn off the television. You open up your laptop and turn on your word processing software only to come to a disturbing realization.
Your phone rings with a notification. You sigh and open it up, revealing an unfunny message from a group chat you barely participate in. You shake your head from side to side, and turn off your cellular device. Clearing your throat for no apparent reason, you sit down at your desk and then…
There’s a scratching at your door. Your hands nearly break apart the key
board, but you decide your time is better spent opening the door. It was none other than your dog whom wanted to force his way inside of your abode.
You kick the dog out of the house.
Despite the whimpers of your Black Labrador, you return to that cave you call your writing desk. Microsoft W
ord loads and you take a deep breath. You flex your fingers to keep their muscles strong, wriggling them to make sure that they’re flexible. You lick your upper lip in excitement and your fingers descend on to the keyboard. But then there’s a low humming sound coming from the neighbor’s house.
At first, you think nothing of it. It barely reaches your ears and does little in the way of interrupting your thoughts. But then it increases by just a tinge. Fine…maybe not adequate but one certainly could do worse. It increases again. And again. And again.
The buzzing of a lawnmower has slain the silence that had once been king inside of your room. To make matters worse, your neighbors think it proper to play loud dubstep while they go about their daily chores. You try to bear through the noise, typing out sentences in a slow frequency. Yet you’re not typing out sentences at all.
Only a garbled mess of letters begin to spawn on your computer’s display, each of them mirroring the rhythm of the dubstep being played outside. Soon enough, you find that your fingers are crashing with divine wrath onto your keyboard. When you had felt so inspired to write this morning, you have now been discouraged by a number of circumstances that were beyond your control. Thoughts of leaving the house cross your mind, but your morale is too low to even allow that as an option.
You shut down your word processor and sink further into your own depression. In the end, the neighbors played dubstep for the rest of the day. And that gibberish you wrote on your laptop? To this day it’s still there.
Finding a good place to write can be one of the hardest parts of the hobby. Especially depending on where you live. I think most writers would dream of living in a countryside villa with a view of an endless horizon past their windows. Where your only neighbors would be miles away from you and the only sound would be the melodies of birds chirping in trees.
This is, however, a dream.
If you are, like most human beings, living in a mess of houses in which hundreds of people go about their daily business, silence can be a luxury at times.
Most of the time, you are surrounded by all kinds of distractions. Your baby brother is crying, an army of dogs in your neighborhood has decided to have a contest on who can bark the
loudest, an inconsiderate relative thinks it proper to turn on the tv without your permissions, somebody decided to play heavy metal next door, etc. Name anything that keeps you away from your hobby and you’re good to go. But sometimes not all days feel like this.
There are days where it might feel that everyone that lives around you just dropped dead. As though not a single soul inhabits those households that make up the rest of your neighborhood. Indeed, there are days when it can feel that you are the only person left on earth. Days in which the words flow from your fingers and everything that you make is as smooth as silk. Except that you find problems in these days too.
When the noises that usually bother us are gone, a dozen other distractions are created by ourselves. Maybe you’re suddenly able to hear the whirl of your fan after years of not caring, maybe just having another quiet person in the room bothers you on some psychological level, or maybe…just maybe…the distractions are made by ourselves?
When you get down to it, we’re the ones that choose to be bothered by these things. I mean sure, the dubstep, noisy neighbors, and television aside, most of these are things that we can learn to just plain ignore. As writers we should discipline ourselves so we can practice out craft in a variety of areas. Regardless of the noise.
This has been the QuestingAuthor. And as always, keep writing.