Stu Hatton says…
Where do I write? Pretty much everywhere.
Quite often I’ll be sitting in the study in our apartment. Desk, computer, chaotic piles of paper, the to-do list that never gets done. This is where ‘serious’ writing and editing happens.
But I try to get away from the computer as much as I can. The loungeroom is a good morning space for brainstorming and jottings. I like to be sitting at the table by the window, with tea and spiral notebook, enjoying a second-floor view of the trees. Or I’ll shift to the couch, taking tea and notebook with me.
I also write while walking, sometimes composing in my head, or sometimes on my mobile phone (I don’t always trust my memory). I’ve filled the note capacity in my phone, so these days I just send myself text messages! Sometimes I need to record ideas while lying in bed, and the mobile can be handy there too, as I can grab it from the bedside table and get the ideas down without having to turn the light on (I’m sure my sleeping wife appreciates that).
I like to experiment with writing ‘on location’, usually in environments where people are interacting (e.g. city streets, cafés, pubs, clubs, beaches, etc.), and attempting to capture atmospheres, moods and chance happenings. Writing in the middle of a crowded dancefloor is an old favourite of mine! In fact, while working as a researcher on a government-funded project investigating the contexts of drug use, I was actually paid to take notes at nightclubs and house parties.
And I enjoy writing on trains and trams. I see time spent on transport as a kind of limbo, where distractions and external demands are minimal, and this makes it conducive to writing. Especially longer trips… The last time I flew to Perth I spent half the flight writing, partly about what was going on around me in the cabin – and quite an interesting poem came out of it.
Stu Hatton will be appearing on The Best Ways Forward panel on Sunday 31st May, within the Melbourne Town Hall program at the Emerging Writers’ Festival.
Stu Hatton is a Melbourne-based poet, freelance writer and editor who teaches creative and professional writing at Deakin University. His work has been widely published in print and online. He has a book-in-progress entitled How to be Hungry. In 2007 he undertook an Australian Society of Authors mentorship with Dorothy Porter, who was an inspiration and will be greatly missed. http://wordyness.blogspot.com
See also in this series – (EWF) Stephanie Convery, Kirk Marshall, (and non-EWF) Charlotte Wood, Michael Gross, Paul Morgan, Damon Young, and Caroline Petit. If you’re a writer, I’d love to hear from you… email contact in ‘About Angela‘.