I recently named this blog site My Writing Room so it occurred to me I might show what my actual work space looks like.
My real-life writing room is a spare bedroom at the front of our house. From the larger of its two windows (above) I have a view down our tree-lined driveway and – closer to hand – of the six birdbaths on a swatch of lawn beneath a weeping hakea tree.
From the other window I can see the ten-acre paddock where my donkeys used to roam (in the days when I ran a donkey sanctuary), 40-acres of freshly-ploughed cropland spreading down the hill beyond, and our nearest neighbor’s stone farmhouse nestled in gum trees at the bottom.
The main furnishings of my writing room are two desks, a standing work station, my plotting chair, a cabinet of curiosities and a 4-foot aquarium full of goldfish.
The larger desk (below) is where I write and revise my novels via laptop. On the shelves around it I have pictures and knick-knacks that remind me of the setting I’m writing about – usually New England.
The second desk (pictured at top) sits before the large window and is mainly where I spread out my research materials and marketing notes. (If I wrote at this desk I’d be too busy watching the birds all day!)
When I’m in the plotting stage of writing a novel, I do most of my writing by hand. For this I sit in an old recliner beside the aquarium. Watching the fish and hearing the soft burble of the air filter gets me in the perfect mellow state for plotting.
Years ago I read about an author (I can’t remember who or where) who said all writers should have a ‘shrine’ in their work room for displaying things that inspire them to write – photos of their favorite authors, dog-eared copies of their favorite books, postcards from intriguing settings, etc.
My writer’s shrine (above) consists of a table on which I keep some of the beautiful leather journals I’ve filled over the years, (nothing gets me fired up to write like stationery!) my current journal, shells I collected on writing retreats, and the candles I light when I sit down to write. (This table is pictured in my blog post dated 12 May 2015)
My cabinet of curiosities holds all sorts of wondrous and fascinating objects from polished stones, my kids’ old toys, bits of their artwork, animal carvings, match box cars, and the odd music box.
Filled with things that delight and inspire me, my writing room extends me a constant inducement to come in and write and is my favorite place to retreat from the world.