Thursday, November 18, 2010

The Napkin Draft

My friends know that I constantly write, both as a job and for fun. When I'm not writing I get cranky and anxious. But when I am writing I become anti-social and weird. Not really a win-win.

Anyway, last night I went out to dinner--which, believe me, is much safer than eating anything I cook--and while I was there I had a sudden burst of inspiration for the new book I'm working on. (Adult this time!) I grabbed my kid's crayon and wrote it down on the restaurant napkin, spewing everything that came to mind. When I ran out of space, I took my son's napkin and added. This all went down AS WE WERE EATING. I didn't end up finishing my dinner.

This may sound like odd behavior, but it happens all the time. Maybe that's why I like to go out to eat so much. Maybe I purposely cook awful food so that I have an excuse to go to the Spaghetti Factory and brainstorm. Maybe.

So as I sat around today, transcribing my napkin draft onto the computer, I thought about it. Pretty much every book I write is partly written on napkins. In fact, I took a picture of a recent one--and this is not a book you know about--that ended up turning into an 85k-word draft. All from a napkin. Actually, I think there were three or four napkins, a back of an envelope and a place mat.

Here's a picture with spoilers cut out:



Am I alone in this? Do you have napkin drafts too?

7 comments:

Jennie Englund said...

I so get that!

Last night at my son's basketball game, I was looking into the trash can for some paper...

Suzanne Young said...

I miss you. :-)

Sara Baker said...

That's what my blackberry is for! It's what happened when I was at the park with the kids. I had to pull it out and start writing immediately. Needless to say, my thumbs were sore for a while, lol.

Trish said...

I usually come home from work with pockets of scrap paper filled with notes/ideas.

elissa said...

yesss! I'm always carrying what seems like a four thousand pound backpack, complete with multi-colored pens and paper, but YES I stop in the middle of everything and scribble notes. I have napkins, business cards, and of course journals full of baby bookspawn. Sometimes I have pulled over to the side of the road to write something down that I think of when I'm driving!

amy said...

haha this is adorable. I don't think I have ever written on a napkin (I have a small notebook I keep in my purse in case inspiration strikes), but I love Sharis! lol.

Wyman Stewart said...

I read Einstein was known to write his ideas on napkins. Perhaps even a table cloth. So, you're in brilliant company.

Maybe a napkin company will pay to help you promote your next book in exchange for your napkin endorsement. It's worth a try.