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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 trained morning columnist, but in the spring of 2010 I was visiting a router-making facility in Shanghais Pudong district and evidenced thousands of workers in robins egg blue-blooded jumpsuits constructing the gear are required to pole-vault Chinas technological connectedness ahead of all other countries in our new international order. This tableau stimulated in me a soothing realisation that countries around the world was changing even more quickly than Id thought it was, and that Id better shake occasions up creatively to keep pace with it.

I questioned myself a few questions: how can I steep myth with that same fractal gumption of falling down a rabbit hole that everyone is know-how when were online? How can writing compete with Netflix? How could I tighten feeling into as few statements as is practicable not just on a sheet but something people are able to speak from a car at 50 miles per hour?

To this end I purposely upended what had been a 20 -year-old writing routine. No more AM clock-based passivity, softly awaiting words that are able to or may not come depending on the nature of the fussiness of my muse. No more predictability; instead of stay here with me feeling nostalgic for my pre-internet psyche, I tried to figure out what my brand-new intelligence was becoming and how that affected my writing. So if you ask me what is my typical writing epoch, I have no specific refute, exactly a series of tendencies which together define my new writing normal.

One: I do much of my writing on aircrafts. Im actually at my happiest when Im writing on an aircraft, 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 distressing agitation 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 clothing and all the women in little pitch-black dresses go back to the place 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 invented ice cubes .

Two: I do much 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 options maybe built( in the highest possible gumption) by an oligarchs mistress. Theres something about is now in a hotel chamber most scribes know this implicitly that frees up ones imagining. First you residence a scorched clay do-not-disturb on your email accounting( 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. None can reach 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 artists studios; the International House of Pancakes on the northern slope of Interstate 15 in Las Vegas. The more random and unexpected the better.

Read more: www.theguardian.com

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