I had some short stories, poems and photographs to share ... and so here I am

Creating A Writing Paradise

I know there are always other things to spend money on, and not everyone can just splash out, but ...

With all of those marathons we perform in front of the computer, writing until our heads are turned inside out, we really must take care of ourselves: our posture, our minds, our general well-being.

I spent years writing in bad conditions - using any old chair, a hand-me-down table that slanted, bad lighting, no view out into the world, no care for how I was positioned.

I am glad to say that this has changed. I decided that if I wanted to be serious about being a writer, I had to invest in it, in the same way that I would invest in a decent car, a decent pair of shoes, a decent oven, a decent no-matter-what!

It doesn't mean we have to sell the children or the grandmother. The new desk that I purchased didn't cost the moon. The chair that has arm rests and is more comfortable probably cost the same as the chair in which I was already aching.

We did go slightly rash though ... perhaps. Now it's a mouse and keyboard with no wires, and in the lounge there is a new L-shaped, quicksand sofa (well, what is a boy supposed to do after all that writing - there is a festival of lounging around to be done). Also, don't forget all those books that have to be chewed in a nice, comfortable place.

What I'm saying is that for something that takes up such a big part of our lives, we shouldn't take her out on a cheap date. We shouldn't spend in some areas and not in the one domain that really could do with the boost of a few handsome pennies.

So, forget the new bike, the new pair of skates, the new toaster, the new mirror on the ceiling, take a look at your writing pen and spruce it up. This is your place of love, pain, joy, sadness, adventure, life, death and all sorts of other experiences - make it a great place to be. Make this a place you really want to be. Make this a place to which you would be happily chained.

The other thing I insist on having now is a view outside. Can you see the sky from your desk? Can you see something inspiring? Or are you stuck in the corner of the laundry, staring into the back of a 1000 volt dryer? See if you can drag that desk into a more heavenly space. Make the house move for you. Don't let it be just the toilet that must have a window to the outside world!

Does anyone else have some great tips to improve our writing environments?

Of course there will be those who are writing in terrible conditions and who don't have many options to change their space. Is it possible to take a notebook and go and write outside? Even thinking about how we can improve our space can go a long towards making us happier writers.

Now, where's that lever that makes this thing swivel?



Although I think it's important to have a view of something nice to look at, I often the window a distraction. In the summer I often go to the family summer house, where every window opens to the sea. I find facing a well-stocked bookshelf helps, although sometimes that leads you to get up and take one down.

I suppose if you're going to be distracted, it'll happen anywhere.

Unfortunately I feel the most creative in bookstores. It would be great to take out a notebook and do some writing there.

Unknown said...

I've been sitting in a corner staring at a very plain ochre wall, different shades of flowers in a vase and a bowl of fruit. Alternatively it's propped up in bed with my laptop on my (FANTASTICALLY MULTI-PURPOSE)tray, the lighting dim and just a slither of light allowed to slip in through the curtains. But it depends what kind of writing I'm doing. The metro (if I can get a seat) that's another great location.

Unknown said...

Think that you have been in my head recently Shameless. Have just sent off an article to a writing magazine about 'The Writing Space'.
I have an expensive executive chair but the pooter sits on a £10 desk from B&Q. It's a bit wobbly but has some great places to wedge your feet!!
I don't have much of a view (the rest of the house has that) but have surrounded myself in 'things' that inspire my writing. Looks a bit like a cross between Dumbledore's office and a sacrificial altar for MacDonalds free toys!!

Anonymous said...

I have a computer in the back bedroom, and used to write there facing an open window with a lovely view of the sky and the tops of the Welsh hills - then got hold of a laptop and now use it on the kitchen table, telly on in the background, usual kitchen/heart of the home things going on, immediate access to the kettle and the fridge.

Both locations are good, but the bedroom one is better for concentration.

Whatever, yes as shameless says - get the best ergonomic furniture you can; get your body comfortable and relaxed, but don't fall asleep . . .

S. Kearney said...

I have a friend in London who sits up in her son's tree hut to write ... way above the tops of houses and motorways. She takes her laptop up with her and a flask of coffee. Whatever works, I suppose. I still ask what the poor wee one thinks about his eviction.