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Douglas Coupland:’ I’m actually at my happiest when I’m writing on a plane’

No more clock-based passivity from the novelist, who disrupted a 20 -year routine with a decision to embrace the unpredictable

I used to be a penalized morning novelist, but in the spring of 2010 I was seeing a router-making facility in Shanghais Pudong district and watched thousands of workers in robins egg off-color jumpsuits improving the paraphernalium necessary to pole-vault Chinas technological connectedness ahead of all other countries in our new world order. This tableau inspired in me a soothing realisation that the world was changing even more quickly than Id thought it was, and that Id better shake happens up creatively to keep pace with it.

I requested myself a few questions: how can I imbue myth with that same fractal feel of falling down a rabbit hole that we all suffer when were online? How can writing compete with Netflix? How could I tighten passion into as few paroles as is practicable not just on a page but something people can read from a car at 50 miles per hour?

To this end I intentionally upended what had been a 20 -year-old writing procedure. No more AM clock-based passivity, softly awaiting statements that may or may not come depending on the fussiness of my muse. No more predictability; instead of sitting there detecting nostalgic for my pre-internet brain, I tried to figure out what my brand-new intelligence was becoming and how that affected my pen. So if you ask me what is my typical scrawl epoch, I have no specific rebuttal, precisely a series of tendencies which together characterize my new writing normal.

One: I do often of my writing on aircrafts. Im actually at my happiest when Im writing on a plane, and Im writing these texts on an aircraft right now, Lufthansa flight 1436 from Frankfurt to Saint petersburg. Theres no Wi-Fi( sanctuary !) and Im having that not unpleasant wizard of soon-to-end Schengen-era statelessness the kind of transnational fluidity so accurately touted by Monocle magazine a headspace where all the men wear slim-fit attire and all the women in little pitch-black full-dress go back to the bureau from the Embassy function to do some late darknes C ++ coding.

Q: Would you like a glass of water with your vodka tonic ?
A: No. Thats why God invented ice cubes .

Two: I do often of my writing in hotel rooms, specially if theres a deadline. Actually, since I wrote the above paragraph Ive territory and am now in the Saint petersburg W hotel which has killer Wi-Fi and interior design alternatives perhaps acquired( in the best possible appreciation) by an oligarchs mistress. Theres something about is available on a hotel chamber most columnists know this implicitly that frees up ones conceiving. First you situate a scorched globe do-not-disturb on your email chronicle( autoreply: Im dead and hence unable to reply to your email) and second, hide the mobile phone in the desk drawer and its almost as good as being on a plane. Nobody reached among you. Youre safe.

Three: I write in places connected in definable ways to the forces of both globalisation and deglobalisation: Shanghai router-making facilities; Chilean classrooms taken over by asserting students, the chambers now converted into creators studios; the International House of Pancakes on the northern line-up of Interstate 15 in Las Vegas. The more random and surprising the better.

Read more: www.theguardian.com

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