Writing While Traveling by Airplane

travelairSummer is one of the most popular seasons for travel. With school out of session and the weather at its warmest, many people take advantage of the opportunity to go on vacation. I personally love to travel and think that it’s a great way to explore the world and get rejuvenated. However, traveling can hinder your writing. If you don’t stay diligent, it’s easy to go your entire vacation without writing a single word.

I am going on several trips this month and I would like to share some advice on how I stay motivated to write while I’m traveling.

Keep Electronics Charged
The majority of writers do their writing on a computer and the portability of electronics allows a writer to bring their work with them on the airplane. If you are going to rely on a computer or any other electronic to do all of your in-air writing, make sure to keep it charged. Because of the popularity of smart phones and computers, many airports have charging stations that you can plug into before the flight. Depending on how big your airplane is, some airplanes have electrical outlets under the seats. The best laptop batteries only last a few hours so make sure that all of your electronics are fully charged in order to get in as much writing as possible.

Utilizing Smaller Electronics and Writing Apps
Laptops are a great way to bring your writing with you, but they can sometimes be inconvenient. When going through airport security, passengers have to completely remove laptops from carry on bags and when walking around the airport, laptops can weigh you down. If you are fortunate enough to own a tablet or any other smaller electronic device, consider bringing that instead of your laptop. Tablets and Kindle Fire devices are incredibly portable and much easier to carry. You don’t ever have to take your tablet out of you carry on and you can use tablets at every stage of the flight, unlike a laptop that you will need to put away upon ascent and descent.

If you choose to use a tablet, consider a writing app in order to keep your writing in one place. There are many writing apps, so make sure to do some research and pick the app that best suits your needs.

Observe Those Around You
Although traveling by air allows for you to reach your destination quicker than if you were traveling by car, there is still a lot of downtime involved. Before you even get onto the plane, you may find yourself in the airport for hours. Use this downtime to observe the people around you. Since there are people from all over the world who pass through airports, you will be able to pick up on different body language, mannerisms, and accents. Observing others and learning these traits will help you build more believable and diverse characters. Not all people act, move, or speak the same and observing how real people behave may help influence the characters in your story.

Give Yourself an Arrival Incentive
There aren’t many distractions while writing on an airplane. Most people keep to themselves on airplanes and it’s easy to put on some headphones and remain focused for the entirety of your flight. Give yourself a benchmark that you want to hit while you are flying. If you hit your word count by the time the airplane touches down at your destination, treat yourself to something when you get off of the airplane and into the terminal.

Air travel is probably the most convenient form of vacation travel. I think traveling by air is a great way to get in some undisturbed writing time and it allows for you to observe different types of people. This advantage can help you write more dynamic characters and the lack of distractions will help you write plenty of words before your vacation begins.

If you have other tips for writing while traveling by airplane, please share them in the comments.

Until next week,



1 thought on “Writing While Traveling by Airplane

  1. Pingback: Writing While On Vacation | Debbie Davis Books

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