Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Writing Space

One of my favorite books is Writer's Houses by Francesca Premoli-Droulers. It's a big coffee table book with beautiful pictures of 20 different authors' houses, desks, gardens, you name it. In it you have Faulkner's southern mansion, Sackville-West's abandoned castle, and Virginia Woolf's sprawling cottage. To see where the greats wrote their books and poetry is awe-inspiring.

As for me, on the very other end of the "great" spectrum, I usually write at the kitchen table. Right there. That's my spot.

It's actually quite nice. Great breeze when the windows are open; fridge nearby; and the good sound system in is this room. I also have all my books and notebooks right on hand. The only drawback is that when anyone else is home, distractions abound. TV being the big one.

So I bought a folding screen and some good headphones.

This worked for awhile. But then the people who live with me discovered even though I was hiding behind a screen and I couldn't hear them, they could still wave their hands frantically or bang on the table to get my attention. "Have you seen my socks?" "Do we have any good ice cream in the house?" "The cat just puked on my knee."

Drastic measures were called for.

I moved into our computer/junk room. I regret not taking a picture. This is a pic I took actually AFTER two weeks of cleaning. Note how you can see the floor and how the desk is not piled all the way to the ceiling with crap. I had made a lot of progress.

Almost three weeks of cleaning, sorting, throwing away, and I created what I call The Sanctuary--my little place to flee.


Here it is at night.

I've got a minus ion, spooky cloud maker, a lava lamp, and an eel-shaped paper weight. I've got candles, incense burners, and a picture of my agent's front door (because I was too shy to ask for a picture with him). All extremely important when your pretending to be a famous writer.

No, it's not a villa or a castle, but I'd bet money Virginia Woolfe didn't have a pink lava lamp.

There is, however, one little problem. Remember I live in earthquake territory. And this is what I have immediately behind me.

Yeah, ouch.

I believe I shall write with a helmet on.