A room dedicated to writing—that’s an ideal for any author. Or not. Some authors prefer toting a laptop or pencil and paper to the local coffee shop, or outdoors where there’s a lovely view and pleasant weather.
Years ago, when I was a twenty-something and living in Seattle, I did not aspire to be a writer. I thought I’d be a singer. My brother had a beautiful voice, my sister played the piano. I had illusions of a family trio—for a few months. I took singing lessons. Since I lived at a boarding house with a landlady who said, “No practicing at MY piano,” I rented a practice room several days a week. All around me, others behind other doors practiced voice, clarinet, bassoon, or piano. But, for an hour, I had my own room.
When I started writing, with teenagers in the house, I heard about writers who rented office space, set it up with typewriter (before most people used anything resembling computers), and escaped into another world. I set up my typewriter in the basement. After a while, I, too, had a computer.
Fast forward a lot of years, and my husband and I are living in retirement. Our children have children, and even a grandchild. I have my writing space in the retirement home basement. I don’t need to escape from a hectic household. But a couple of days ago, I read about a local free-lance writer who has his own small office space in a local building, a restored tobacco warehouse divided into individual offices.
Gee, should I consider that?
Nah. I look out my window, and think—drive through weather like that, every day? Then I look at my desk, piled high with articles I must save, my desktop computer, my printer, my rolling chair, the full bookcases surrounding me. Move all that? You think? Of course, if I had Kait Carson’s very neat office, maybe… Nope. Why change perfection?
I’ve always wondered—does taking your work to a new place, one without a dishwasher to empty, a dirty clothes hamper full to overflowing, and dust on every shelf—make for more time spent writing? Or, does taking oneself away from daily life also take away the inspiration? Somehow, I think that answer changes by individual, and perhaps, even by the moment. What do you think? Have you ever tried moving your work to a new space?