So you think you’re ready to write. You’ve got your pen and paper or laptop handy, and you’re about to write the future bestselling mystery or fantasy or literary novel. The pen touches the paper or your fingers graze the keys. Something doesn’t feel right, though. There’s a noisy neighbor yelling in the apartment over, or the sounds of the Starbucks weren’t quite as pleasant as you’d hoped. Your desk is piled high with papers you should’ve sorted through weeks ago, or maybe your dog has decided to grab his or her favorite squeaky toy and chew on it loudly right at your feet. You have to get out of here.
A writer’s space is a sacred space. It’s a place free of stress or worry (unless, of course, the writing is stressing you out, but we’ll get to that in another post). It’s a place you can come to and forget all of the little nagging things in the back of your mind—bills, college, work, chores, exercise, diet, health issues. It’s where you clear your mind of everything except the story that needs to be written. So, here are some tips on how to make that special place.
1. Decorate your space with things that inspire you, humor you, or simply make you feel good. – For instance, my space is decorated with a bulletin board filled with keychains I’ve collected and a map of Discworld. I’ve actually collected keychains for nearly twenty years, and each one has a story to tell. This especially helps me with my nonfiction writing, as it brings back good memories to get the creative juices flowing. The map of Discworld, on the other hand, reminds me of my husband. The Discworld novels are some of his favorites. Therefore, the map gives me a sense of comfort and security, just like being in my husband’s presence.
2. Choose a space with the noise level and lighting that are best for you. My space has dim overhead lighting and a dim lamp if I need a little extra light. I am fairly sensitive to light, so dim lighting really helps my focus. As for noise, I picked a place in my house that is the absolute quietest: a little room off to the side of the kitchen that my husband and I refer to as the “craft room.” If you prefer a little background noise, why not try to liven up your space with classical music or a nature sounds machine?
3. Most importantly, choose a space that’s comfortable for you. Or make it comfortable, like I did. My husband and I purchased a soft, plushy blue recliner to put next to my desk so I’d have somewhere to read or rest comfortably. My office chair is plenty comfy, but nothing beats reading in a nice recliner. If you don’t feel like investing in new furniture, maybe think of what “comfort” means to you. Find what actually allows you to relax. This could be a comfort snack, a nice blanket, a cozy hoodie, or even a sensory toy.
Also, here’s my sacred space: