Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Inspired by the Silence of the Drive - Thursday's Children

I'm a lucky girl. I can sometimes count on one hand how many other cars I encounter between leaving my house and the fifteen minutes it takes me to get to the highway. Then once on the highway it's another fifteen minutes of barely-there traffic to the high school where I teach.

The drive is often shrouded in the fog that dips into the valleys. Some mornings a brilliant red sky will lift over the mountains. Other days I dodge deer like falling acorns. Usually, I forget to turn on the radio. I stop for school buses and whisper hello to the paint horse who stands like a statue in the corner of his small paddock. The automatic turns of the steering wheel and the thrum of the tires on the road are fertile white noise for creativity.

The silence of this drive is one of my best brainstorming times. If I'm deep in the heart of a story, this drive is filled with nothing but creation.

Then when my brain is full, I turn on some great music, or NPR (which is inspiration for a different Thursday post :0).

Anyone else love the brainstorming therapy of a long, quiet drive?


27 comments:

  1. That is funny that we touched on the same topic this week! When I have a longish drive ahead of me I'm always torn - use it to think about my stories or use it to have complete control over the music selection... Thanks for joining us this week-looking forward to the NPR post too :)

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  2. When I was a kid, my dad always used to take us on "drives" down back country roads so we could enjoy the beauty. My older bro and I would always groan about how boring it was, but looking back on it now, it's one of my favorite childhood memories.

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    1. Nice! It's funny how they change isn't it? The memories?

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  3. I'm jealous of your back road drives! I live in a city so I don't see much green :-)

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    1. But city has other delights. Like great food!

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  4. I hate to admit that I never actually got my license––I'm a true New Yorker––but when I was at college I used to cycle to class and I lived a little ways out, so the English fog along the river definitely cleared my head!

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    1. I love to drive - can't imagine not being able to - though it would be fairly useless in NYC!

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  5. I drive as little as possible because I get so deep in my head, I am oblivious to my surroundings and become dangerous. I sometimes forget I'm driving a car! So my walks are when I brainstorm. Then I'm not a deadly weapon. I have bumped into parked cars, though. Thankfully it hurts me, not the cars. ^_^

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    1. Is it wrong to giggle at this image of you?

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  6. I used to love the car time and country roads, then I moved to MT and now I spend my commute grumbling at the drivers here who love going 10mph under the speed limit (this is something I will *never* understand!). :) But a good, long run with some good tunes turned way down does this for me and I love building a story while out on a trail.

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    1. I've got one old fellow I get behind on my road who does this. But what's worse, is when we get to the straights where a person could pass...he straddles the yellow line. I swear he does it on purpose. I've learned to just slow down and enjoy the extra few minutes. Fretting is pointless.

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  7. Love this post - I want to live where you do! Sounds amazing...

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  8. Oh, now I see why your car ride is the opposite of mine. Yours is quiet and nature-focused along country roads. Mine is people-filled on city streets and freeways and the inside of my car is full of conversation.

    Both rides have merit. :)

    http://otherworlddiner.blogspot.com/2013/03/inspiration-car-rides-conversation-and.html

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    1. I love brainstorming in the car if I have a human to bounce ideas off of! Usually I'm alone though. Always when driving to work.

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  9. My brain is always percolating something while driving. Sometimes traffic gets too heavy for it, but I still manage to put a part of me into creative mode. Showers are another time. I'm jealous of your drive tho. I love nature and the mountains.

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  10. I don't drive that far on my own usually, but I definitely find long journeys can get me thinking and inspired to write.

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  11. Lately, I haven't gotten as much alone driving time as I like. Sometimes I even snarl at my husband and he know it means I REALLY don't need company in the car. Or he'll announce that he's going to take a nap while I drive and I'm like--good shut your eyes, pass out for the whole drive, please!

    Those bouncing deer can be an issue, though.

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  12. Beautiful journey. My drives are zipping along a freeway, dodging motorcycles and big rigs.

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  13. This happens when I visit my mother (30 miles away) and my husband's family (1 hour away). It's the best time for creative thinking :)

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  14. Wow, it sounds (and looks) like you have an amazing, scenic ride each morning!

    I ALWAYS get ideas while driving to and from work or wherever. And yeah, mainly with the radio off. Something about the monotony of the drive (it's almost like I'm driving on autopilot) that allows the gears in my mind to churn.

    Next time I get stuck... I'm going for a drive!

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  15. I'm so jealous of your morning drive! It sounds heavenly. :) In nice weather, I'll drive out into the country to clear my head and ponder my stories. And sometimes, I'll pull over near a pasture, take notes and talk to the cows. ;)

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  16. Yes I love being in the car for inspiration, the longer the journey the better. But what a lovely route to drive to work and a really great way to start the day.

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  17. Your drive sounds so peaceful. I'm usually singing at the top of my lungs.

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  18. Such a soothing post. Made me relaxed just reading it. :)

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  19. Well said, I love those long drives and I think this may be a writer thing...really gives us time to think of stories/relax : ) Thanks for a nice post!

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