Writers have a reputation for being introverts and homebodies. However, there are times when traveling can be advantageous for any author. Whether you have wanderlust, are writing about a part of the world you’ve never seen, or anything in between, you could gain immense inspiration from travel. Learn how to make the most out of writing on the road with the following tips.
Image Source: Pexels
The Importance of Writing Inspiration
Writer’s block happens to just about everyone. A better way of looking at it, however, is as less of a block and more of a redirection. The word “block” brings to mind something that stops you completely in your tracks. You’re probably not suddenly unable to write completely. Instead, you feel like your writing is lacking inspiration.
The cure to this lack of inspiration is to continue to write. Writing inspiration can come in many forms, but taking a road trip is among the best. Unexpected sights and encounters can prompt new ways of thinking, and a simple change of scenery can reinvigorate you. Whether you have a deadline coming up or just want to write to the best of your ability, consider travel to inspire and inform you.
Travel as a Mental Reset for Authors
It’s important to plan for writing burnout. Everyone goes through ebbs and flows in creativity, so being ready for them can help you make the most out of any downtime. As an author, you may need to meet certain due dates, and having backup plans for burnout can be crucial. Understanding how you react emotionally, mentally, and physically during burnout periods will help you create a plan of action.
Authors can benefit from a travel reset. Along with the physical benefits of increased exercise opportunities, you will notice mental health boosts like increased sleep quality, enhanced meaning and motivation, and better moods. All of these reasons are enough to give you the travel bug, but you can also visit a novel location. This can mean a new location, but it also can mean a location that you are writing about or plan to write about in a novel. If the setting of your novel is a real place, you can visit to really step into the character’s shoes and get a first-hand sense of what it is like to be in that environment.
Practical Tips for Productive Writing on the Road
If you’ve realized the benefits of traveling for writing inspiration, you can finetune your plans to make your travel as productive as possible. It’s expected that you will take a considerable amount of time away from writing, but you may be surprised at how efficient you can be when not at your dimly lit desk at home. Taking a laptop, tablet, mobile phone, or pad of paper along with you can allow you to jot down ideas as soon as they strike.
Boost Efficiency With Tricks and Tools
When you have to focus on driving, acquiring meals, and reserving activities and accommodations, you may become a bit distracted from writing. To mitigate these effects and boost productivity on the road, you can incorporate some tools and methods to keep yourself on track. Consider some of the following:
- Trying time management methods like the Pomodoro Technique, 25-minute intervals of working and 5-minute intervals of breaks;
- Creating environments conducive to restful sleep, like booking darkly lit hotel rooms or wearing earplugs;
- Prioritizing breakfast to start your day on the right foot, even if that means pre-packing food for the trip;
- Adding meditation to your daily routine — bonus points if it’s in a safe, outdoor destination along your travel route;
- Scheduling regular workouts, like walks along new trails or physical activities available only in the new area;
- Getting face time with loved ones, even if that means using video calls or driving to see them.
As you can tell, you can be more productive when you spend time taking care of yourself. Travel can take a toll on your health if you aren’t prioritizing self-care, so make sure to schedule healthy activities and rest periods when visiting your novel locations. You can also destress more if you plan for mishaps and extra responsibilities you may encounter on the road. Save money on gas with a rewards program or even by using an electric vehicle. Have a first aid kit and jumper cables stowed in the back of your car. Keep a power bank handy to charge your devices. Research the areas at which you plan to stop to find out the most cost-effective parking, food, and accommodations. The less stress you have on your writing adventure, the better.
Foster an Environment for Creativity
Just as you need an environment for proper sleep to feel refreshed enough to work on the road, you should make sure that your environment for writing is equally as revitalizing. Make sure to minimize distractions by creating a mobile writing setup that works for you. Invest in portable tech and ergonomic lap desks if you are limited in space. Look into cozy cafes and coworking spaces along your travel route. You could even go the quintessential author way and book a remote cabin to be alone with your thoughts in the new writing destination of your dreams.
Balancing Exploration and Focus
You should also realize that your traveling time is meant just for that — travel. You’re traveling to explore. Balance your personal goals with writing by allotting only a certain amount of time dedicated to writing work. Otherwise, your increased focus will quickly turn to burnout again, regardless of location.
Being an author on the road is a delicate balancing act between wanderlust and discipline. Traveling for inspiration can be a transformative experience, as the world becomes your muse and every new destination is a potential chapter in your story. However, staying focused amidst the allure of new adventures and distractions is an ongoing challenge. To harness the inspiration that travel provides, it’s essential to carve out dedicated writing time in your itinerary. Whether it’s jotting down notes in a quaint cafe overlooking a bustling marketplace or retreating to a remote cabin nestled in the wilderness, having a space and schedule for your writing is crucial. Finding the right balance between exploration and expression is the key to crafting narratives that reflect the profound impact of your nomadic writing journey.