I can sit anywhere, in any loud place, and work. Everything becomes twenty feet farther away than it really is. The chirping, barking, jingling cash-drawer of a world is out of reach, and therefore more precious.
You must have a good seal. When you unstick your thumb from a jammed-in plug, your eardrum will make a tiny silent cry of pain, like a word in Arabic.
Then you know you have a good seal.
I am very familiar with that Arabic word, as I often hear it when removing the ear buds of my iPod.
I wrote my first novel on the family room computer, with teenagers running in and out, the TV blaring, and the clothes washer and dryer humming in the background. But now I feel tremendously blessed to have a quiet home office. I also like writing in my back garden when nobody's around. I don't need silence to write, but in most moods I prefer it.
How do you like to write? Are you more likely to crank up the stereo, or to seek a quiet spot when you work on your stories?