Monday, April 18, 2011

O is for Office: a Place to Write

One of the joys of writing is the freedom we’re blessed with while we work. We don’t have to wear a dress code, we can keep our own hours, and we can write anywhere we desire. The problem with freedom is it can lull us into a false sense of ease which in turn can open us to distractions and laziness.

In a semi-recent post, Clarissa Draper wrote about the importance of getting dressed for work to write, rather than staying in our comfy pyjamas. By getting dressed, we tell ourselves it’s time to write.

I’d like to take it a step further and suggest it’s also important to find a special place to write—a place we can shut the door to cut out distractions, a place we can spread out and call our own, a place we can stick up pictures and notes to inspire. This not only helps us focus, it also helps the mind-frame of our families. When we are in our writing space, they will know not to disturb us.

Do you have such a space? Where is your favourite place to write?


Note: This post is part of the A-Z Challenge. To learn more about the challenge click the image on my sidebar.

A special thanks to Rachna at Rachna’s Scriptorium for the Sunshine and sisterhood awards. Also to Kiernan at Fire in Mine Ears for the Versatile Blogger Award. Please visit their blogs.

Chris Kelworth at Kelworth Files is also starting up a 'Critiquing Crusaders' program, where writers can find other writers to exchange critiques with or form critiquing circles. Check it out here.

VOTE for Me: As some of you already know I’ve been nominated for the Sydney Writer’s Centre Best Australian Blogs 2011. I’ve also entered into the bonus People’s Choice Award. Please click here to vote. My blog is listed under W.I.P It: A Writer’s Journey -- Lynda Young.

57 comments:

  1. I love your office space. I share the study/writing space with my partner. It's amazing how loud typing can sound when your thinking ;)

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  2. OH is that your office space?!!? WOW!!! Love it!!!!!

    I agree - a space of one's own is so important - whether as a writer or not. I think it doesn't even have to be a physical space (reality may dictate that you live in cramped noisy conditions) but what's inside your head and your soul is all yours to escape into.

    Take care
    x

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  3. My office is in my room. uggg. BUT, hey it works.

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  4. My office currently consists of my couch or my kitchen table. I need a desk, but my husband will take it over as soon as we get one! Once I get a house, there will be a special office just for me!

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  5. Elaine, haha yep I can relate to that.

    Old Kitty, yep, that desk and all its mess is all mine. I do share the room with my hubby, but he has his own desk behind me. And you're right the space doesn't have to be physical as long as you can get there.

    Read, as long as it works it's all good.

    Las Vegas, yep sometimes my office is my couch too -- especially in winter when I can open the blinds and let the sunlight flood in.

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  6. Is that a sword beside your desk in the bottom left corner???

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  7. A very good idea, time I ditched that track suit and dressed for work, might help my wip output!

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  8. We have a dedicated office room, but I don't use it too much for writing. I'm using my old grade school desk which is small and I can't really spread out with all my writerly stuff. So, until I get new furniture, I'm rather mobile and have a few different places around the house where I do my writing.

    Love your desk and setup. :)

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  9. Dezzy, hahaha trust you to notice. Yep it's the sword of Charlemagne (replica) and there's also a katana beside it in the shadows.

    Carole, it does work. (for me anyway)

    Liz, with such a small desk it's good you have more than one place to write

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  10. We have a small house. I share the classroom with my kids... at night and in their breaks - it becomes my writing space and I do ask them to leave from time to time.

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  11. a woman can never be too safe when hubs is out of town, I guess :)

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  12. Great office space. My little desk is on wheels, so it goes wherever I take it. That is the good thing. The bad thing is if I pile too much stuff on it, the stuff falls of when the desk gets moved. Someday I hope to have my dream office. Someday.

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  13. Great writing space! I really need to get a proper office desk in my office...

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  14. I wish I could have an office space with an actual door that I could shut, but that's not in the cards right now. I do have a desk in the corner of our living room, and my kids know that if they touch my stuff it's a federal offense. Zero tolerance! That doesn't stop my two year old from climbing on my lap, though, so I use it mostly at night when they're in bed.

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  15. Nice office space. Good luck with the competition. I clicked over and votes. Fingers crossed for you.

    Mason
    Thoughts in Progress

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  16. I'm a laptop girl. I can write just about anywhere, but I usually end up in the den with the dog curled up beside me on the couch. No katanas, but I do have an axe and a bow and arrows in there. Weird writerly thing I guess. :)

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  17. I love your office. I have my own office too. I took over a spare bedroom.

    Congratulations on being nominated for The Best Australian Blog! Way cool!!!! On my way to see if I can vote???? (I live in the US.)

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  18. Congrats to you :) and I love your office. I'm jealous :) My kitchen, dining, lounge is openplan and I sit at the dining table to write. there are distractions everywhere. I will have to wait for a child to move out and then I'll nab its room.

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  19. It is important to have a space for our writing that gets in the mood of writing and imagining the world we are creating. Great office space!

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  20. We've been talking about the importance of a writing space lately, too. If nothing else, it tells our kids "Mommy's working" more than sitting on the couch balancing the laptop does.
    erica

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  21. i was actually thinking about this idea this week- whether or not that would help... thanks for the push, lyn!
    LOVE your new background! :)

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  22. Michelle, sharing a space does make it harder to 'teach' those around you it's time for you to write.

    Dezzy, exactly ;)

    Susanne, oh my gosh, if my desk moved there'd be utter chaos! I need to learn to be a tad more neat and ordered ;)

    Trisha, thanks. It does help

    Jeigh, hehe kids do make everything a whole lot more complicted...but it's worth it.

    Mason, thanks so much for the vote!

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  23. L G Smith, aw, I've always wanted an axe and a crossbow (bow and arrows are harder to display).

    Sharon, anyone across the world can vote. Thanks so much. I appreciate your time and effort.

    Niki, I hope you have comfy chairs at your dining table :)

    Josh, and getting in the 'writing zone' is so important..and thanks :)

    Erica, yes exactly!

    Aspiring, I hope it works for you. Glad you like the background. You are the first to mention it, Vic.

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  24. hehehe I knew I would get an Aussie sooner or later eyeing up my pav. He was having a naked photo shoot before being dressed in whipped cream... lol

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  25. Niki, hahaha so funny. I'm sure the NZ pav felt a lot less embarrassed dressed with whipped cream.

    Anyone reading this and wondering what on earth we are talking about, please visit Niki's blog ;)

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  26. Hey, I didn't realize that you to had been nominated! I have already been and nominated and they will only let you use the page once. Sorry :(

    All the very best. Let me know how you go!

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  27. I love your office idea. I write in my bedroom, but it's quiet and my own getaway place so it works perfectly for me.

    I see you've alwready gotten a nod for Versatile Blogger, but I'm tapping you as well because I love your site and look forward to my visits here. Your award badge is at http://melissasimaginarium.blogspot.com/ I voted for you in People Choice blog awards. Good luck!

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  28. Aw, no worries, Tabitha. Thanks for your best wishes.

    Melissa, quiet places for writing are blissful. Thanks so much for the versatile blogger award. And thank you too for voting for me in the People's Choice award. Hugely appreciated.

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  29. Thank you for the comment. most appreciated.
    Yvonne.

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  30. I wish my space was like that. You can see my more cramped writing space here: http://scribbleandedit.blogspot.com/2010/09/where-to-write.html :O)

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  31. That's a lovely office!

    I have an office too, though I usually refer to it as "the library" because "office" makes me think of my old job, which is a bit depressing, haha. It's messy and stuffed with books and has a door I can shut when I don't want any distractions. It's my favorite room in the house!

    Congrats on the nomination! I voted for you!

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  32. How I wish I had an office/writing room like yours. At the moment I have a writers bureau that holds all my writing stuff, but I write at the dining table. There is something about the space that gives me freedom.

    Awesome post, as always!

    Ellie Garratt

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  33. I love your office space, Lynda! Nice and writerly--the lit branches behind the monitor is a nice touch. I myself write in either the office or the kitchen, actually. I know it sounds crazy, but our kitchen is furthest from the bedroom/office areas & if The Hubby is up and moving about, it's my best bet for solitude.

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  34. I’m lucky enough to have a spare double bedroom at home for my writing room; with a three metre desk...that I just use a tiny corner of!

    I manage to write anywhere and everywhere, mostly by hand scribbling down ideas and rough drafts. That’s the great thing about writing; the world is your office! And it gives you plenty of inspiration been out and about all the time.

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  35. Our desks look very similar, except my piles of 'stuff' are higher.

    I also have a treadmill in my home office - a visual reminder to use it more often. (I don't.)

    Sometimes I think a mechanical arm should just swoop down and yank me out of my chair and onto the treadmill. Now THAT would get my attention!

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  36. I can't write at a desk, and I almost always wear pjs while writing. I think it depends on the person. For me, when I get on the pjs and settle down with me laptop in a comfy chair or on my bed, THAT tells me it's time to write.

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  37. What a cozy writing corner! Love your "space." Good point about pj's, but over the years I seem to have managed to train myself to write any time--whatever I'm wearing, no matter what time of day it is (I always thought it had to be evening), etc. No excuses that way. ;o)

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  38. It reminds me, I haven't actually wrote my follow-up post to that challenge. I should do that. Thanks for that.

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  39. I never considered getting dressed to write. But it makes sense. I do like to shower and shave first, but still write in my jammies.

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  40. Beautiful office.
    I have an office, a sun porch and my kitchen table. Those are three that give me the best inspiration.

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  41. Great office! I love mine, too. It's my special place, for sure.

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  42. Great office. I am joining you to write there. I will be a quiet guest, I promise. And won't make a mess.

    I write on the bed, sometimes at my desk.

    Already voted for you.

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  43. Having a writing space is great.

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  44. I love your office space too. I am actually jealous of it, LOL. Ever since I got my laptop, I do all my work in bed. End result: Pain in the back.

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  45. Stephen, getting dressed to write forces you to be more self-disciplined, I guess. I will do it too...some day. For now, I just love me tweety pyjamas way too much.LOL

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  46. I really wish I had that luxury, I live in a closet, but....someday I will have a room with a view :)

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  47. That's your office? It looks great!

    I don't really have a particular space--the computer stays hooked up to the Internet so I can't move it from the living room. :P But it's quiet a lot of the time, and there's plenty of light.

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  48. I prefer writing at my desk where the computer is; makes it easier and faster.

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  49. Madeleine, hehe that's what my space used to look likeuntil I got my current desk.

    Jennifer, Oh! I love that you named it your library! Sounds brilliant. My hubby calls my office, my 'playspace' hehehe. Thank you so much for the vote.

    Ellie, that feeling of freedom is important.

    Alyssia, I rarely use the room's main lighting because of those branches. Makes the room feel cozy. Oh and I understand the need for distance. Hubbys, though adorable, can be distracting.

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  50. Steven, 3 metre desk!!!! How awesome!

    Anne, I confess I tidied a smidge. OH!! I need one of those mechanical arms too! hehe

    Sarah, it definitely depends on the person. It can even depend on a certain mood at any given time. I think a comfy chair is essential.

    Carol, often it comes down to just deciding it's time to write.

    Clarissa, thanks so much for the vote. I'll be interested to read your follow-up.

    Stephen, there is something wonderfully comfy about jammies.

    Giggles, oh I love the sound of your sun porch, Mary.

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  51. Talli, it's good to be able to call it your special place rather than your 'work' place.

    Rachna, hehe you are most welcome. And thanks for the vote.

    M Pax, yes indeedy.

    Maria, yeah I can't write in bed either for that exact reason. Thank you so much for your vote.

    Siv, rooms with views are over-rated. The view becomes a huge distraction ;)

    Golden, quiet is good. My neighbours spent two years renovating their house. Every day I had to write to the sound of hammers and angle grinders.

    Emily, definitely an advantage.

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  52. I have not been able to complete a novel without spending the bulk of the writing time at the kitchen table. I can switch it up a bit and go to the local Cracker Barrel (that gets expensive) and I've even driven four hours to my parents' place for the weekend when a strong deadline hung over me. But it is just as Virginia said, we all need a room of our own.

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  53. Suze, I'm impressed you managed to spare the 4 hour drive time with a tight deadline.

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  54. I write from my little upstairs office/room. Most of the time, I am alone and husband is off to work...no kids around, just me and the screen. I have two windows to look out onto the street, and I do sometimes find that distracting, however, I also find it interesting, as the people that pass by below the window, aren't aware of me observing them. I've even started a photo file entitled, 'From the Upstairs Window'. It's amazing what passes by on the street every day.

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  55. Joy, I like thesound of your office. I also like the sound of your photo file. How cool!

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I'd love to hear your opinion. Thanks for leaving a comment.