Thursday, January 27, 2011

Creating your own writing space

When I was young, and I was asked what I wanted to be when I grow up, the answer was always a writer. I would close my eyes and envision myself behind a beautiful wooden desk, bookshelves lined with books both written by me and my peers. Of course it had a beautiful backdrop of rolling fields that would give me endless inspiration.
But as a lot of us know that is not always possible when first starting out, my own personal experience of having four children in a small house makes having an office or even a spare room a far off dream.
But one of the best pieces of writing advice I ever received was to create a space within my own home, solely for my writing.

A space that could help train my brain to be creative in, a space designed to inspire me, A space where not only I could take my own writing seriously but a space that my family could respect as they started to take my wring just as seriously as I was

So despite my limitation of space, I decided to give it a go, and create in a corner of my already overcrowded home, my own writing space.

When looking to set up your own writing space, I believe that there are few must’s that should be followed.

Choosing location can be very important; setting up in the middle of the family lounge room will be a social experience, but not much of a constructive one, as you are assessable to all kinds of distractions. (Partner, children and the brain sucking TV)
Choose somewhere that is a little secluded, where you know that you can write undisturbed for a length of a time, try and find somewhere that is bright, having a window is a great option if you can manage it, if not, do your best to liven up your environment any way you can. 

When sitting down to write, you are going to need a little bit of space. At the very least enough room for your computer or notepad and a coffee. When I first set up my writing space, it is was with a small corner computer desk, that had just enough room for my desktop computer, a small pad to make notes in and just enough room for a drink.  To begin with it was all I needed, and took up only a small amount of space from our kitchen. (Not the most ideal spot, but it was better than nothing)

When writing fiction it is a good idea to surround yourself with things that inspire you, will kick start your creativity. A fantastic way to do this with posters or art work, especially if you are not close to a window, choose pictures that are in the same genre that you are writing in. you can even choose pictures that help depict your characters in some way, or scene that you can use in your background. The options for this are limitless, it doesn’t always have to be art, and it could be anything of meaning to you and your inner muse.

It is a good idea to have a space nearby for all the things that you may need while writing, a shelf, a small bookcase or even a small filing cabinet can do the job nicely as a place to store all the writing resources that you may need, be it a dictionary, thesaurus, pens and notebooks, research martial or work notes.
Having it all close at hand, makes it easier  in helping you refer to you what you need in a more timely fashion, which won’t interrupt your flow of creativity as much than if you have to search for what you are looking for.

When I first created my writing space, I was surprised at how quickly it took for my mind to become almost programmed to write every time I sat down at my desk. By taking my writing seriously and setting myself a word count I was able to finish the first draft of my novel within six months and having my own writing space I believe was one of the very things that enabled my success.
SO give it a go, and create your own writing space today…Happy writing

take your writing seriously

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