Now the writers car should have no payment. This is a must. This prevents the writers car from being snatched when times get hard. A constant condition. So the writers car should be over ten years old with a good 150k on the odometer. This will allow the writer to bargain hard by pointing out the mileage and the fact the car is a gas hog (old Explorers and trucks are excellent writer cars because no one wants them) If you can get a smaller car then so much the better, but most writers end up with a lot old lead sleds. Under no circumstances do you wash the writer car inside or out. This allows you to save boat loads of money and makes you less conspicuous in bad neighborhoods.
So now you have the writer car and you have to fill it. There should be overdue books from the library floating around the back seat or on the floor. These can be current or obscure novels that the library desperately wants back and the writer just can't seem to get them out of his car. Along with these old books are notes for future books, notebooks from old books, a collection of CDs that still play with an amazing amount of scratches led off by the Best of George Thorogood that amazingly seems to play no many how many times it travels around the car as an errant flying saucer.
Coffee cups should abound in the console of the writer car firmly adhered into their cup holders, welded tightly since just after 9/11 when you anxiously drank from your mug while listening to hours of NPR. For some reason taking the writer mug out of the writer car seems just too hard and so it has become part of the writer car. Now there should be many wrappers from fast food with french fries that amazingly never decay. If you ever doubt there are chemicals in french fries, leave one in your car for several seasons and after being baked and frozen you will be amazed to find it looks exactly the same.
Finally, there should be books hidden under the seats. Maybe a dog eared copy of Catcher in the Rye or a collection of essays by David Foster Wallace. Anything that you can grab while going into coffee houses all over America. Having these books firmly wedged under the seat allows you never to be caught without reading material. The beauty of the writers car is that it is totally expendable. If Floyd or Hank deems you needing a new transmission or engine, then you can just leave the writer car (just be sure to take all your books and old fries, you never know) and then walk on and go find another one. Get on the Internet and find another one. Craig's list is heavy with writer cars.
William Hazelgrove latest novel Rocket Man is due out in the fall