How Does Your Writing Space Stack Up?
What does a writer need to write? What kind of writing spaces do authors create? The UK’s Guardian takes a look inside more than 50 authors’ offices in a series called Writer’s Rooms. Each author describes their space — complete with little quirks and hangups — accompanied by a picture. Some are clean, some not. Some are minimalist, some almost baroque. All offer an interesting peek inside the minds of their creators, including folks like Martin Amis, Alain de Botton, Seamus Heney, Margaret Drabble, and John Mortimer (who, as the creator of the drinkingest lawyer around, won’t surprise you with his admission that he keeps a shelf of drinks handy).
I have a home office hewn out of a walk-in closet — I built in a wall-length desktop (at 32″ high — I always find typical desks, which are usually 30″, a tad too short for my tall-guy knees) and some wall-mounted bookshelves to supplement the closet shelves already there, threw in some storage cubicles, file cabinet, and another bookshelf for good measure, and replaced the inward-opening door with a curtain. When it’s clean, it’s gorgeous, but since I’m the kind of guy that is afraid that he’ll forget about anything he can’t see, it’s not usually very clean.
To be honest, though, I’m a write-anywhere kind of guy. I do probably 60% of my writing on my laptop at the dining room table or on a reclining chair in the garage (where I can smoke), and another 20% or so in various faculty lounges at the different campuses I teach at, or on my Alphasmart in bed, or even on my Palm in waiting rooms and park benches around campus. That leaves my home office for only about 30% of my sum total of writing, which is a shame, really. If I kept it clean, I’d probably spend more time there, don’t you think?
I will, of course, spare you the trauma of seeing a picture of the space. I’m trying to be helpful here!