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Douglas Coupland:’ I’m actually at my happiest when I’m writing on an aircraft’

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 scribe, but in the spring of 2010 I was visiting a router-making facility in Shanghais Pudong district and witnessed thousands of workers in robins egg blue jumpsuits building the equipment necessary to pole-vault Chinas technological connectedness ahead of all other countries in our new international order. This tableau motivated in me a gentle realisation that “the worlds” was changing even more quickly than Id thought it was, and that Id better shake things up creatively to keep pace with it.

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

To this end I deliberately upended what had been a 20 -year-old writing number. No more AM clock-based passivity, quietly awaiting messages that are able to or may not entered is dependent on the fussiness of my muse. No more predictability; instead of standing here find wistful for my pre-internet brain, I tried to figure out what my brand-new psyche was becoming and how that affected my pen. So if you ask me what is my typical publish epoch, I have no specific explanation, just a series of tendencies which together define my new writing normal.

One: I do much of my writing on planes. Im actually at my happiest when Im writing on a plane, and Im writing these messages on a plane right now, Lufthansa flight 1436 from Frankfurt to Saint petersburg. Theres no Wi-Fi( sanctuary !) and Im having that not distasteful whiz 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 black garments go back to the role from the Embassy function to do some late night C ++ coding.

Q: Would you like a glass of irrigate with your vodka tonic ?
A: No. Thats why God devised 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 St Petersburg W inn which has killer Wi-Fi and interior design choices perhaps constructed( in the highest possible feel) by an oligarchs mistress. Theres something about is available on a hotel area most novelists know this implicitly that frees up ones contemplating. First you residence a scorched soil do-not-disturb on your email history( 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. Nothing 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 complaining students, the chambers now converted into creators studios; the International House of Pancakes on the north back of Interstate 15 in Las Vegas. The more random and surprising the better.

Read more: www.theguardian.com

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