Iowa rule #3: Notice the sky.

You will never see this blue in New York so you wake at 7 every morning. Sit on the steps of the old capital to read from 7:30 to 9. Walk to get a tall skim chai at Starbucks. Find a bench in the shade. Read more. Find a spot in the back of the Java House mid-morning. Write. Take a break to hear a lecture at 11. Write while you eat lunch. Sit on the steps for 10 minutes before class, reveling in fresh air and sun. Try not to think about how much time you spend indoors while you're working in New York.

Instead, focus on the sky. It's really that blue.

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