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Working Florida into your writing

August 16, 2013

As recently referenced, sometimes I write at remote locations. Except during the five to six months of summer, those locations are often outside. Nothing like getting out into the great outdoors, plugging in, and using some free wifi.

Here in Florida, except during afternoons in rainy season, that’s something you can do, a lot. In fact, there’s no shortage of places. There are beach bars and restaurants, parks, and a seemingly endless supply of restaurants and cafes with outdoor seating. You’re nuts not to take advantage of it.

No view is bad that contains a palm tree.

Because I live here, most of my writing happens in Florida. And because of what I’m writing, most of the action takes place inside. The great cerulean panorama of the endless Florida sky barely plays a role in what my characters see and experience. And because they’re all transplants, concerned with the events going on around them, there’s really not much opportunity to enjoy the Florida that we should all enjoy.

What could be better than floating down a cool spring-fed river on an inner-tube on a hot summer afternoon? Or jogging across a causeway , the heat and humidity cut by the sea breeze? Or floating on your back and watching the endless realignment of clouds as they glide by overhead?

Or sitting outside with a cool beverage and thinking about the twelve-to-eighteen inches of snow coming to friends and family members unfortunately enough to live in the land of the six-month freeze?

We moved to Florida in 1998. It’s been a decade and a half since I’ve had to worry about leaving a bottle of liquid in the car, lest the deep freeze of the winter night causes it to explode. I haven’t gone weeks on end forcing myself outside on the weekends because it’s dark every day when I get to work and it’s dark again before I get home.

At a place like this, work is a million miles away.

I haven’t planned out five or six weekends in a row so I get everything in before it gets cold again.

Living here this long, I start to take these things for granted. There’s always another day to wear sandals and sit outside in the sunshine. Maybe my work should reflect that.


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