Random Inspirations

Welcome to my blog, full of fun inspirations and insights on writing, self-publishing, and more!

Airplanes and Creativity: Inspiration at 40,000 Feet

on June 21, 2013

It’s that time of year again: summer vacation! Time to pack up and discover new lands…or rediscover old, familiar ones. Last year, I blogged about how travel stimulates creativity, but on my last flight I realized that the mere act of flying on an airplane also seems to stimulate creativity.

I’m sure not everyone will agree with this–some people are extremely anxious about flying, and need to medicate themselves before setting foot on a plane. And then there are those who don’t really want to think on flights, they just want to be entertained.

However, I’ve  always felt that above the clouds is one of the most inspirational places ever. That’s why I prefer window seats. I love watching the landscape change far below, and admiring the way the rising or setting sun tinges the clouds with fiery shades of rose and gold. I also adore flying in the middle of the day, gazing down at the tops of the clouds. Sometimes, I think it looks just like heaven…until there’s turbulence, or a baby starts screaming, of course.

Above the clouds is one of the most inspirational places ever.

Above the clouds is one of the most inspirational places ever.

And after I admire the “airscape,” I inevitably come up with some pretty fascinating ideas. The concept for the novel I’m finishing came to me in a plane, as did the idea for my next one. It seems like the huge block of time combined with the relatively low amount of distractions allows me to have super-productive writing sessions, too. On some flights, I’ve been so absorbed in my writing that I’ve actually lost track of time.

On my most recent flight, I hashed out exactly how I’ll be making one of my wedding favors. Then, I read a cooking magazine and a book about self-editing, in that order…which gave me an idea for my next blog post. I realize that’s a random collection of influences, but it will make sense, I swear! No more hints, though. You’ll have to check it out next week. 🙂

I’m not the only one who feels more creative on flights. Antonio once wrote me a “Love Letter at 40,000 Feet,” which was one of the most beautiful, thoughtful, and insightful things he’s ever written–and, incidentally, the inspiration for the title of this blog post. And when I took a look around on my last flight, I noticed dozens of people who seemed intensely focused on the view, their laptops, their reading material, etc. A creative bunch, for sure.

So, as you board your next summer flight, remember to sit back and relax. Close your eyes and meditate, since creativity is all about the right mindset. Bring some stimulating reading material or a journal, or just gaze out the window. And the muses will come to you. Bon voyage!

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