24 May 2011

Word Count Blogathon Day 24: Top 5 Favorite Writing Spaces

Some places speak distinctly. Certain dank gardens cry aloud for a murder; certain old houses demand to be haunted; certain coasts are set apart for shipwrecks. 
~ Robert Louis Stevenson

And some places were just meant to encourage the art of writing.  The saying is true: wherever you go, there you are.  So it goes with writing spaces.  No matter how ideal the space, or how far away from external distractions it may be, you are still you and you bring all your internal distractions along.

Some people are absolute geniuses ~ they can write a masterpiece in a cold small room amounting to no more than a closet, with a stub of a candle for light and a broken pencil.  Jane Austen’s writing space was a drafty hallway, with a small occasional table and a little chair.

But I’m a dreamer and an artist and no genius.  And I firmly believe in the power of place.  That our surroundings matter.  That atmosphere has a strong influence over our emotions. . .and our art.  So when I write, I choose to surround myself with rich colours, luscious scents, and sounds that speak to my mood as much as possible.  And when it isn't possible to have all three, I try to have at least one of those elements present.  Here are my top five favorite spots to write in: three are real and two are my fantasy writing spaces.

My Bedroom
Walls drenched in a rich, cranberry red.  Curtains in cranberry toile.  Bookshelves overflowing.  And two desks: a solid maple that was my mother’s first gift to my father after they were married and a huge old desk that was a flea market find where I can spread out and reference my book collection while I write.

The Bathroom
I’m with Michelle Rafter on this one.  Growing up, sometimes the bathroom was the only place with any privacy!  Since inspiration can come anytime, anywhere and where better than under a steaming hot shower or a candle-lit bubble bath?

My Office
Sometimes I come in super early or stay uber late.  It’s rare, but sometimes in those off hours, I can accomplish a lot of writing, even if it’s only topic notes or story ideas.  And I’ve been known to dash off a poem or two at lunch.  Obviously no rich colours or pretty scents here, but Grooveshark is a lifesaver!

Inner Sanctum of Edna St. Vincent Millay, from Writer's Houses
Fantasy Spot 1 - Edna St. Vincent Millay’s Writing Sanctuary
I have to include this one.  What I wouldn’t give to have a spot like this!  Granted, I would paint the walls red or some other jewel tone and have multiple mood lighting.  But what I really crave [and need] is a library in my home.  A room with enough wall space for my book collection.  And my nice maple desk of course.

from A Storybook Life
Fantasy Spot 2 – A Quaint and Quiet Garden Shed
I found this while trolling the net for shed plans.  I’ve read of several artists who had little sheds built in their backyards where they could create in peace.  I would love to have something like this in my backyard, surrounded by nature.  Sort of like a playhouse for grown-ups.

What about you?  Is there a space where you’re at your creative best?  I’d love to hear!

Oremus pro invicem,
~ Mikaela
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