ON WRITING

“It’s very easy to quit during the first ten years of writing. Nobody cares whether you write or not, and it’s very hard to write when nobody cares one way or the other. You can’t get fired if you don’t write, and most of the time you don’t get rewarded if you do. But don’t quit.” Andre Dubus

Friday, 29 October 2010

Writing Space/Place - for the Share Your Space Blogfest to celebrate NaNoWriMo.

You'd think only a masochist would enter a blogfest on the first day of NaNo, but hey, you've gotta be a masochist to enter so it's right up my alley. Thanks to Summer at 'and this time...concentrate, I am writing a picture essay about my writing space.



 Just before NaNo begins is a good time to write about where I'll be writing during this crazy month devoted to pen, paper, laptops, netbooks, too much caffeine in the form of chocolate and coffee, too many quick snacks like the giant muffins at my favourite coffee shop, too many...oh, too many to mention...read on...

Trouble with this scenario, my battery always runs out - even though it's supposedly 10 hours!


I've travelled the world, but have never tasted a better muffin than at the Brisbane State Libray coffee shop.

At times we can get a bit antsy about our private writing space. When you have toddlers the writing world is usually around the dining room table, where a few words snatched here and there are better than not writing at all! Many lug laptops or netbooks with them on trains and boats and planes, while others scribble the olde worlde way with parchment and quill in a favourite chair by a roaring fire (must be a few left!)




I'm sure many of you have writing palaces to die for,  but I'm pretty sure it is a truth universally acknowledged (sorry Jane) that some of our writing spaces leave a lot to be desired. But no matter what your situation, writers write!

Oh botheration, what was that word again? Methinks a little nap is in order.


I've been a bit disgruntled with my writing space since I moved from a large beach house to a city apartment. I often go to a coffee shop at the wonderful state-of-the-art city Library a few minutes away and write, surrounded by the sounds and the wonderful smells of coffee, rather than in my tiny space. The problem with this is there is just too much stimulation - there might even be a ridgy-dige digeridoo player to serenade you - distracting.




Getting serenaded while I work.

At the moment my writing place in the apartment is in an open study/cum spare bedroom/cum office/cum husband's ebay buying frenzy space. Eeek! So I only get my writing done in spurts.


I don't feel so bad about my lack of space/place after reading Barbara Kinsolver (author of The Poisonwood Bible and recently The Lucuna), and her comments in Small Wonder. To quote: 'It is widely rumored, and also true, that I wrote my first novel in a closet. Before I get all rapturous and carried away here, I had better admit to that. The house was tiny; I was up late at night typing while another person slept, and there just wasn't any other place for me to go but that closet. The circumstances were extreme. And if I have to -- if the Furies should take my freedom or my sight -- I'll go back to writing in the dark. Fish gotta swim, birds gotta fly, writers will go to stupefying lengths to get the infernal roar of words out of their skulls and onto paper.'

Really, I'm just spoilt! I have acres of room!


For NaNoWriMo this year I have booked my own private room where I will write for 2 hours every morning at abovementioned library. This will be good discipline. Every afternoon I teach in the same library, so I will be living half my life there for the whole 30 days.




My writing space for November - a meeting room at the library.

Inside Brisbane Square LIbrary - I teach on the right and write in a meeting room on the left.


STOP PRESS! We moved the tenants out of our beach house and yesterday we began the big task of moving back in - just for weekends at this stage and of course for the Christmas week. It'll be great knowing I have my beach house overlooking the Pacific Ocean waiting for me to escape to when I'm not teaching.


My beach house writing place - just gotta get the table cleared first! I'm making a study this time, but I'm sure I'll still sit at the end of this table as it overlooks the Pacific Ocean...


 ...with a view like this...



So let's go NaNo, let's go...now what where did I put that story outline then?


39 comments:

  1. I have a computer in one corner of the supposedly formal dining room. To my left is a bookcase with my favorite books, including the Bible, dictionaries, science textbooks, journals, etc. I've taken over the space and claimed it for my scrapbooking and crafts. With two young kids, who needs a formal dining room? I clear the area only when we have guests, and I don't entertain much, so it all works well.

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  2. I understand fully. I have the same sentiments here. Thanks. By the way, if your business needs some rewarding change, then it might interest you to consult the best Australian business coach who is continuously changing lives for the better. Good luck!

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  3. My space is generous. We just moved my desk into a room that is quite large and my husband is going to put french doors on it so I can keep him out! Just kidding. Well, really, Im not kidding. I must say I am lucky to have a place for my writing.
    Im so glad Im passed the little toddlers running all over. One advantage of being a late blooming author!

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  4. I'm lucky in that I have a room (office) of my own as I don't have any kids. I tend to take it for granted, until I read posts like yours.

    I remember reading that Stephen King wrote a novel in a tiny laundry of his house in the early days. I know some writers love writing in coffee shops, but I think I'd be too distracted by people watching, LOL.

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  5. I write in a conservatory - which is lovely. Only problem is it can be too cold in winter and too hot in summer, then I end up in the living room with my laptop balanced on my knee.

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  6. I'll write in whichever room of the house is free, and sometimes on train journeys. Also in the garden when the weather is as lovely as it is at the moment. Don't know about coffee shops - I'd probably be distracted too.

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  7. So we prove the point - writers write (wherever!) but I still wish I had my own space! The best I can do is buy a netbook so it is not so heavy to take everywhere...

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  8. It's funny I was writing something this morning about this very thing. We have a back room but it's rare ten minutes passes without one of the kids stick their head round the door. I just have to grab whatever quiet time I can.

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  9. Coffee addict, Any time grabbed is a bonus, isn't it? I find I'm getting up earlier to get more writing done, and really I'm not a morning person, just forced to be...

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  10. Hi,

    Just stopped by to say goodluck with NaNo, and to say great post re writing space! Love the historical image.

    I did the descriptive piece re fav writing space on my award page - your award I think. Didn't get around to posting pics. But a boring old country style kitchen is just that, large country style kitchen!

    As for boudior writing space re veranda/balcony oerlooking garden: it has a bed at one end and all the necessaries for female space (hubby has own room with spiral staircase and adjoining door). At the other open-plan end of my boudoir is a sitting room with table for sewing, and corner set aside as art studio, plus it's a great reading space. ;)

    best
    F

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  11. Oh Francine, I would love to see pics of your space. Sound so cute to me!

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  12. OMG, that beach house!!! You lucky thing, you! And you work in that library?? *sigh* Some girls have all the luck :))

    Best of luck with NaNo!!!

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  13. Wow. That is one amazing library!

    And the beach house? I'm not sure I could ever get any work done there--to much pretty to look at.

    Thanks for participating!

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  14. You know, it's neat that you write in so many places. All the moods, atmospheres, sounds, textures.....probably why your writing is so rich. Love the beach house, btw.

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  15. The beach house looks like paradise to me. I'd be staring out the windows too much to get any work done!

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  16. You're dead on - writers write, it doesn't matter where or how, just so long as it gets done.

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  17. What a fun post! What a beautiful library you work in (and write)...but the beach house?! Be still my heart. DREAMY.

    Thanks for sharing all the loveliness...and now I'm off to start my Nano project. :)

    Love,
    Lola

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  18. I'm oh so envious of your beach hut. I'd quite like to spend a few weekends there writing during NaNo! I think the sea is brilliantly inspiring - so you should be sorted!

    Thanks for sharing :)

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  19. Your library is beautiful! The best thing about writing in the library is that you can get up & find your research nearby!

    But your beach house is awesome. You're so luck to have a place like that in which to write.

    & best of luck as you embark on your NaNo journey! :)

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  20. Ha! I write in my closet. That's got to be worth something!

    Writing palace...

    - Eric

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  21. The thought of a beach house to write in makes me sit in a daze of happiness for you. I'd love a mountain cabin for myself. And if it over looked the pacific I wouldn't mind that either. *chuckle*

    Great post but yes, you are a masochist. Especially when you've got moving back into the beach house to do.

    Jai

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  22. Cool pictures. I've been known to write everywhere, but not in places this interesting.

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  23. Dear Everyone! Looks like the beach house is a winner! I wish I could be there all the time!

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  24. That beach house is amazing! The library sounds pretty great too. I'm certainly feeling envious, anyway!

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  25. I want a view like that!!! Nice writing space my dear!

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  26. The Kingsolver quote is so great--it is so true! Thanks for sharing!

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  27. Oh wow, a beach house! Lucky you! Must be such an inspiring place to write! And great idea with the private room! How cool!

    P.S.: There's a blog award awaiting you on my site! :)

    http://jc-martin.com/fighterwriter

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  28. Oh my god. That's the most beautiful view ever! No wonder you want to write there - that's perfect!

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  29. Hello L'aussie!!! Wow you've got different venues!!! Haven't tried that yet. I thought of going to the library to get some really quiet space, away from everybody else...but haven't gotten around to doing it yet. I have my small space in the corner in my son's bedroom. It's quiet at night, that's when I write :)

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  30. Hart, Tessa, Sarah, JC, Alexandra, Len: Glad you like my spaces. Libraries are wonderful places to write surrounded by books. Beach houses are great too!

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  31. Hey buddy, I'm booking a flight to sit beside you and write while looking out at the Pacific. The library looks great too. Holy moly, every place you write in is totally awesome. Thanks for sharing!

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  32. Hi Brenda, sounds like I could work on my dream of turning my beach house into a writer's retreat huh?

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  33. me! me! I still write with pen and paper so I cannot even say what my word count is for NaNo.
    My fave writing space is the husband's borrowed bean bag(I tell him it helps my back).
    Your view is awesome, the Husband wants to live in Australia and given our wanderlust issues it just might happen,

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  34. I am so jealous! SO JEALOUS!

    I love that you've booked a room to write in! And your beach house... wow.

    Happy writing!

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  35. Joanna, I like pen and paper occasionally. I think my imagination works better that way. Come on over, there's plenty of room!

    Talli: Yeah, it's all pretty good and the library room is working a treat. I'll be there all day today but not writing all the time unfortunately..:)

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  36. Good luck with NaNoWriMo! Hope you get settled into your writing space soon. I enjoyed your post and the lovely pics!

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  37. Okay, everybody's coming to your beach house to write on the weekend. With pictures like that, surely you were expecting guests?

    I'm used to writing wherever I can--I get a lot done on the train, I got the first 1000 words of my NaNo done at a shopping centre waiting for friends for a movie. So long as it's somewhere I can sit, I'm good! I really envy you your meeting room though, that sounds like a wonderful option.

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  38. Jamie, thanks, you too!

    Amie: Might be a bit far for most people! But you're very welcome!
    Yeah, you write where/when you can..:)

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