“The zone” – that particular set of circumstances: location, time, space, sound which provide the mood, the momentum, the mindset to become so enrapt in your work it becomes no longer only work, but an obsession that consumes a day or more… comes to me when the cat is satiated on the extra treats hubby slips her before he left for work, my carers have done their and left, and I have the house to myself.
First, the coffee – good and hot, plenty of it.
Then the music – do I want quantity today? Hard rock.
(Am I editing/proofing for quality? Ambience-stroke-new age.)
Next – which computer – the one in the sunny warm room which gets the north sun but reflects every glaring light source, or the one on the south side which looks onto a boring road and across it to a boring factory wall. Usually the sunny room wins, so part of getting into the zone entails finding my BRITTEN peaked cap to blinker my eyes.
A few moments of quiet to review yesterday’s progress (or none), then the music, and very shortly I’m there.
I will not hear a door knock or bell. I will forget lunch until my meds alarm sounds off. I will not see the clouds come across the sky, darken the room and drench what may have been dry laundry out on the line. I will not notice that the only light source is the computer screen. I will not have started dinner when hubby walks in and has to remind me that with curtains wide open all around the house I am wasting power costs trying to warm the Antarctic.
But I will have been in my own world, with my characters, fighting their fights, loving their lovers, riding their ranges for a good seven hours or more. It’s a drag, that return journey.
(This post inspired by http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/06/02/daily-prompt-zone/. Thanks)