In September, I enrolled in Creative Writing 203, writing for children. Assignment #1 was to write a couple of scenes and link them with appropriate transitions. Assignment #2 was to use these scenes (or one of them, or an adaptation thereof) in a short story. We had to post it online.
This happened to coincide with an obligation I had in my Franciscan life--I had to attend Chapter meetings in Boston. Difficulties with airlines, and so on, resulted in a nightmare of a journey. Originally, I was to fly from Vancouver to San Francisco and from there to Boston. I'd fly red-eye, and arrive in Boston about 7:30 a.m.
When I got there, I'd take a bus to a certain location where I'd be met and taken to the site of the meetings. Of course, Murphy's Law took over. My San Francisco flight was delayed, so I emailed my Boston contact and announced I'd be arriving at noon instead of 7:30. This was because I had to go by way of Chicago! He emailed back that another Franciscan would be arriving from California at that time and would be renting a car--he'd take me to the site. Long story short: The Californian didn't get the memo, and I had to wait until 4pm for the next pick-up!
So what does this have to do with writing?
The assignment was due to be online by Friday night, and I'd still be in Boston then. So--I wrote the short story while "passing the time" in Vancouver airport, San Francisco airport, Chicago airport (midnight), and then noon to 4pm in the Boston airport.
Once in Boston, I tried to sleep before supper, but couldn't. Finally, I got to bed about 9pm, I think, and woke up suddenly at midnight. That was when I finished off the short story and posted it online. From then on I did not have to think about the course while dealing with the Franciscan Chapter business.
BUT--when I got back to class the following week (still jet-lagged) I learned that I had posted the story in the WRONG PLACE! (I wasn't the only student to have made the mistake.) A teaching assistant sorted it out, and all was well that ended well.
Oh yes, the course also had a major QUIZ in the only class I missed while away. Good news: I was allowed to write the quiz before the next class.
RESOLUTION: I'm NEVER going to take a red-eye flight again. That week I had two of them. The flight home was Boston to Toronto, then to Vancouver. Jet-lag lasted at least 2 weeks.