Burning the midnight oil

It’s an interesting phrase, one that means someone is working overtime at the office till late at night, or early next morning.

You know, “Been burning the midnight oil again, Frank?”

It prompted me to look up its real meaning.  It goes back to the days before electricity where a worker toiled into the night using only an oil lamp or candles.

In my office, I now have LED lights that are reasonably bright, not like the neon lights I used to have that made me feel like I was in a television studio.  Either way, it’s not quite the atmosphere needed when looking for inspiration.

That inspiration might be better attained in a more subdued atmosphere, perhaps even using candles.  In one of the other rooms, we have a wood fire and that projects a very soothing glow, as well as providing warmth, and there I sit sometimes, Galaxy Tab in hand, writing.

But all of that aside, those hours leading up to and after midnight are the best time for me to write.

At times the silence is deafening, another rather quaint but relatively true expression.

At others, there are what I call the sounds of silence, which for some reason are much easier to hear than during the daylight hours.

The bark of a dog.

The rustle of leaves in the trees.

The soft pattering of rain on the roof.

The sound of a train horn from a long way away.

The sound of a truck using its brakes on the highway, also a long way away.

The sound of people talking in the street.

I’ve never really thought about it until now, but it will be something I can use in one of my stories.

Perhaps it will be the theme of another.

Damn, sidetracked again!

2 thoughts on “Burning the midnight oil

  1. I like those small hours for writing as well, only I’m at the opposite end of the day (I get up early so I can write before I have to get ready for work). Since I live in a rural area, I hear owls and coyotes providing atmospheric background while I write. 🙂

    Like

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