My Favorite Places Are....

Flight delayed....

If the seats aren't wide enough, take a couple.
If the seats aren't wide enough, take a couple. | Source

Airports

Not too long ago I was waiting for a flight. Across from me a young woman was reading a book. When she had had enough of the book and closed it, I asked her if she knew the difference between a book and an airport.

She replied that she did not, and I proceeded to explain that while a book usually has a plot and several key characters, an airport has a thousand stories walking by.

That is why airports are among my very favorite places.

I am a writer, and those "thousands of stories walking by" are grist for my mill. For other writers who from time to time mention their experiences with the phenomenon called "writer's block" I suggest a trip to the airport.

I can eavesdrop politely and know what people are talking about that interest them.:world affairs, personal affairs, business, reunions, sadness, indescribable joy.

I can imagine the stories I see walking by: "a mother, impatient with her young children, children impatient with a parent, lovers sitting off by themselves (though they would have been just as oblivious of the crowd, were they sitting among them,) a young woman stretched out on four seats and trying (perhaps successfully) to sleep, while running the risk of missing her flight, the heavy set man munching his way through some unnecessary food, the elderly grandmother in an unattended wheelchair and lost in her memories, the gloved lady collecting a portion of the day's trash while dreaming of next weekend at the seashore building sand castles."

Try some mental note-taking and visual-snapshots when you are next in such a setting as an airport, a crowd just leaving a movie, a too full restaurant, or gazing around a library at readers and staff shuffling the books such as the one the young woman was reading across from me in the airport.

Churches

I once wrote an article on religiosity that came from a lifetime of church attendance and some observations made in churches.

Now there is a danger in imagining stories in a church setting, or elsewhere for that matter. It is the danger of judging. Judging is something that my core beliefs caution against doing.

Be that as it may, churches are gathering places in which stories can suggest themselves. Their stories run from babies, to weddings, to thought-provoking homilies, to social gatherings,to funerals. In short, churches offer story ideas from all the stages of life that can arise from a religious setting. Countless books have been written centered on the people who frequent such places and events.

A writer who ignores the potential diversity of thoughts and characters one encounters in churches, is self-limited.

A wooded trail

It isn't only poets, adventurers, hunters, and exercisers, who can enjoy a wooded trail. Writers can, too.

Writing takes thought. Some can sit down and type out columns to meet deadlines, but most of those get thrown away the next day, unless they gave them serious thought.... more than thoughts of their deadline and getting apparently intelligent words into print.

Admittedly most writing takes place with paper, pencil (if the first thought is not just the right one), a typewriter (if you are famous and don't want your work hacked by someone who isn't,) or at a computer screen (if you are still struggling to be famous and hackers don't know about you yet.)

But there are times when, just as a heavily used blackboard needs a thorough erasing....even a washing, a writer's brain needs to refresh after an intensive writing effort, or when in need of a fresh look at where the invented characters are taking the writer in a project still underway.

Then it is time for a walk along a wooded trail, a deserted beach, or through an empty field at a time of day when the path is yours alone with your thoughts.

Then let the thoughts take you where they may; direct them, if you must, but give the mind some release until the freshly cleaned blackboard is ready for the next word, and the next word is ready to be written.

As a writer, you will have your own favorite places. These are some of mine. Try these out a time or two and see what these places have to offer you. Your muse can use some refreshment from time to time. You can choose the place, or places, that work best for you.

____________

© 2015 Demas W.Jasper All rights reserved.

More by this Author


14 comments

bizarrett81 profile image

bizarrett81 17 months ago from Maine

"while a book usually has a plot and several key characters, an airport has a thousand stories walking by"

Wonderful quote.

I too love wooded trails. Nature is my muse. There is something in the sway of the trees and the sound of the leaves that bring the creativity to the surface.

Lovely hub, voted up


Perspycacious profile image

Perspycacious 17 months ago from Today's America and The World Beyond Author

bizarrett81 - On my photographer's bucket list is getting a video made of a large weeping willow tree swaying in strong, sustained breezes. It won't take too long to achieve that one.

Thanks for commenting.


Dana Tate profile image

Dana Tate 16 months ago from LOS ANGELES

I get inspired by going to parks or any type of social gathering. The airport sounds interesting. I never thought of that.


FatBoyThin profile image

FatBoyThin 16 months ago from Kinneff, Scotland

'A thousand stories walking by' - what a great quote. I guess that means none of us should have any trouble coming up with fresh ideas. Nice Hub, Demas.


MizBejabbers profile image

MizBejabbers 16 months ago

That really is a great quote, Pers, you are very poetic and a good writer. There are some good ideas here. I like your idea of the video because I sometimes get inspiration from looking at photos I've taken.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 16 months ago from The Caribbean

Pleasant read, good suggestions, and I'm sure that the airport will also be among my favorite places. Good advice to open up our minds for the stories around us. Thank you.


Ericdierker profile image

Ericdierker 16 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

Wonderful hub. This made me laugh at myself, as sometimes I will sit in an airport and wonder what people see when they see me. Everyone is a full story to me, I wonder what story I am to them.


aviannovice profile image

aviannovice 16 months ago from Stillwater, OK

Great suggestions. You never know what you'll find for topics when there are plenty of other people around. This has got to be quite a treasure trove of material.


Perspycacious profile image

Perspycacious 16 months ago from Today's America and The World Beyond Author

Is this "Reply" dsomething new? I don't recall seeing it before today. I'm always glad when you like something I have written. Stamps?


annart profile image

annart 16 months ago from SW England

Yes, any place where there are crowds is a forum for ideas on the human situation. We can glean so much from watching and listening, as you say. Sitting in a coffee shop is another; whilst people are at leisure, they chat about all sorts and eavesdropping is easy as you sit with your coffee and gaze out of the window!

Great ideas!

Ann


Kate Mc Bride profile image

Kate Mc Bride 15 months ago from Donegal Ireland

My favorite place is my bed Demas closely followed by a wooded trail. Your writing is so easy to read- full of humor and wisdom. I liked your line about the danger of judging. Kate


Perspycacious profile image

Perspycacious 15 months ago from Today's America and The World Beyond Author

Kate Mc Bride - Beds are indeed the favorite places of lots of folks young, newlyweds, and old. Kids can zonk out anywhere, go to bed when they must, and often turn their bunk bed into a reading room....reading by flashlight until someone in authority notices.

The wooded trail has its times of priority, too. Care for a hike?


Kate Mc Bride profile image

Kate Mc Bride 15 months ago from Donegal Ireland

Any time Demas but I will need a cane to be able too-have a ceramic hip replacement.Luckily enough it gives me no bother but hiking?will need a cane to be on the safe side.

Kate


Perspycacious profile image

Perspycacious 15 months ago from Today's America and The World Beyond Author

The right side is the safe side and we will keep moving on. I hope you got my email, and for Hubbers that haven't figured out how to send another an email: go to that other Hubber's fan mail and look for the link that lets you do one.

    Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account.

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No HTML is allowed in comments, but URLs will be hyperlinked. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.


    Click to Rate This Article
    working