Writing on the Wing

Two days ago Emily and I realized that Plank Road Winter, our revision in progress, needed an entirely new chapter. The next day I plotted scenes in my head while driving from Indiana to Wisconsin.

The following morning at the Milwaukee airport I filled twenty pages in the little spiral notebook I carry in my purse. Aboard a flight to Minneapolis, I typed those pages into my Netbook.

I spent the afternoon in the Augsburg College library alternately scribbling in the spiral and typing from the handwritten draft. Early in the evening I typed the final lines of Chapter 27, emailed the manuscript to my sister author, and headed off to see the campus show that was my purpose for the trip.

Ending a long session of writing fiction is like coming up from underground, blinking and a bit dazed by the strange world of colors and light. It’s nearly the same feeling as closing a book after a long stretch of reading. One emerges groggy and disoriented from traveling between worlds.

I write this post aboard a flight from Minneapolis to Milwaukee—though I have not yet arrived in Milwaukee, as the plane has been diverted to Madison, Wisconsin, because of snow. Does this mean I’ll have an opportunity to sit in an airport and edit a few more chapters of Plank Road Winter?

A writer can always make use of an unexpected gift of time.

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