WMBTSG Day Seven (Make comments to this post to participate)

Welcome to day seven of the annual Writer Mama Back-to-School Giveaway. One lucky winner will walk away with this gift set from Ninth Moon:

A Writer’s Space Collection (value: $82.90)

  • A Writer’s Space of One’s Own book, 247 pages. Creativity expert Dr. Eric Maisel shows you how to create the perfect “psychic and physical” space needed to write what you want, the way you want. Covered items:
  • honoring your inner muse,
  • sparking your creative impulse,
  • making the most of the time you spend writing,
  • devising personal rituals to start writing and keep writing,
  • creating a workspace that complements the writing process,
  • design a writing schedule that’s easy to follow—no matter what.
  • Honey House Baby Belly Bar (not just for pregnant bellies!). Designed to nourish and “baby” your sensitive skin. All natural butters: Shea, aloe, avocado, mango, cocoa—and other beneficial natural ingredients: jojoba, lanolin, sweet almond oil, meadow foam, red raspberry, calendula, beeswax, vitamin E, essential oils.
  • Wishes Do Come True necklace. Pure .925 sterling pendant (not plated!) with beautiful copper-inlaid sides. On a leather cord with sterling lobster clasp.

Bio:

Laron Glover is owner of Ninth Moon (http://www.ninthmoon.com), a boutique store that provides “gifts to delight and tools to inspire” writers. Ninth Moon specializes in treasures (not trinkets) and has recently added a line of author promotional items (bookplates/labels/stationery). Laron is a writer mama herself–her “baby” will be starting kindergarten this year, which means she no longer has to compete with a 5-year old for her laptop. She admires all parents who manage to write around jelly-coated keyboards and temper tantrums in pursuit of their dreams.

***

Writer Mama Creative Manifesto Pillow from Writer Mama Stuff at Café Press.

Original Writer Mama cover art by Claudean Wheeler, modified by Burton Haun.

***

Today’s question: How important is your writing space? Which aspects of your space are most important to you? Tell us about your dream writing space, if you don’t have the writing space you’d like yet. 50-200 words on your writing space, please.

If this is your first post in the giveaway, please read “Da Rules.”

Post comment until midnight on September 7th to enter today’s drawing.

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37 Responses to “WMBTSG Day Seven (Make comments to this post to participate)”


  1. 1 Erin Maher September 7, 2008 at 1:31 am

    A medium sized room on the second floor of a house, with windows on at least two sized. Ideally, one window is curved outward and has a comfy seat covered in cushions. Quiet, but with some background noise from the outside world, and a ton of shelves for all my miscellaneous business.

    The house would be situated somewhere central, so I can travel about town. The door to the room would always be open, allowing my pets to happily distract me once in awhile.

  2. 2 Margay September 7, 2008 at 2:56 am

    Presently, I have to fight for equal time on the laptop with my high school senior who, aside from social networking, needs it to work on reports and projects for school. But I do still like to work out some ideas in longhand, so it all works out in the end. My ultimate work space would be a room separate from the living room (where I currently work, small apartment) where I could just disappear with my own laptop and all of my research and reference books neatly organized on shelves and in filing cabinets.

  3. 3 Kisatrtle September 7, 2008 at 5:16 am

    My space is brown and pink polka dots and no I’m not making that up. I have the spare bedroom in our home as an office/santuary and wouldn’t change a thing. Except maybe I would get rid of one desk and put a futon there. Then on late nights writing or working or playing I could just sleep there instead of with my snoring bear of a husband…LOL

  4. 4 Ginny September 7, 2008 at 5:35 am

    Because I have kids, my writing space is, at the moment, wherever I can get some work done! I do have an office, but it is a mess of papers and books and notes that I never have time to clean up. My dream space: a little house (one room) in a garden, surrounded by flowers, trees and birds, all my own. My desk, laptop, printer, a comfy chair, a coffeemaker and a little fridge for snacks. I would be surrounded only by beautiful things – no clutter, no toys, no junk. That would be perfection.

  5. 5 Laura September 7, 2008 at 6:30 am

    How interesting that you ask about my writing space, when I was just rearranging it yesterday! I live in a mobile home, so there is not a lot of space. Last year, after reading The Writer Mama, I moved my writing desk from my bedroom (which gets really cold in the winter) to a corner of the living room. For motivation, I have this combo bulletin board with a 4-space frame (holding pictures of some of my goals) attached hanging above my desk.

    My writing space is very important. When I sit at that desk and light my candle lamp (the signal to everyone that Mom is writing, don’t talk to me unless it’s an emergency), I know it’s time to work. It helps me to get in the writing space in my head. After lighting the candle, I do a quick writing exercise to warm up, and then pull out whatever I’m working on. Sometimes this means moving over to the computer desk, but by then, the time spent in my writing nook has prepared me.

    Now if only I could get myself into that chair on a regular basis….

  6. 6 Meryl K. Evans September 7, 2008 at 6:45 am

    My home office gives me a place to put me in the working mood since I don’t use it for folding laundry, watching TV, or any other activity. Some people might dress up to make them feel professional.

    Many experts say that people who struggle with sleep shouldn’t watch TV or do other non-sleeping activities when they’re in bed. Something about when you’re in bed, your mind associates it with sleep. The office works similarly plus it provides a clear line to separate my business from the rest of my house.

  7. 7 Mary Jo C. September 7, 2008 at 7:43 am

    The most important thing about my current writing space is that it is my own sacred space. Though just a corner window nook in my bedroom, everyone knows it’s mom place – do not put anything on or remove anything from the desk, do not touch the laptop.

    My dream space would be an entire floor of the house (pref the attic) with lots of natural light, a wall of deep file cabinets topped with a large dry erase board to track the steps of my current project. I have pictures of this space cut out and hanging on my current bulletin board – visualization, baby!

  8. 8 Annette S. September 7, 2008 at 7:48 am

    My office used to be a former sewing room in the SW corner of our house. I had a functional desk, but the walls were dingy white and I has so much stuff crammed into my hutch and the surrounding area that I felt crowded out.

    Well…two weeks ago I put everything into piles, did lots of recycling and purging, and last weekend painted the walls a warm coral/salmon color and installed a new desk. The transformation is amazing. The color gives the room an inviting energy that makes working in here enjoyable and the new desk has a lot more counter space. It used to be that I could only type on the computer in here and had to resort to any journaling or longhand drafting on the kitchen table. Now it’s one-stop-shopping time!

  9. 9 Cheryl M September 7, 2008 at 8:22 am

    For me a writing space has to have a desk, a chair, and a computer that works well. It is this last part that I have been having trouble with lately. Today we are taking a big step and completely erasing the hard drive and then restoring everything. I am quite nervous about that. So, if you don’t hear from me again, well, that’s what happened.

    In the future I’d like to get a laptop. I can envision setting up at the library and writing while my kids are at school. I think I would be less easily distracted in a environment separate from my home.

  10. 10 Cat September 7, 2008 at 8:26 am

    My writing space is a cramped spare bedroom where all the extra household stuff gets piled. I have been thinking of a dream workspace lately, and I think it could be in this room. I’d like it to be mostly empty, except for my books and desk, and maybe a chair. Light–lots of windows and soothing yellow paint. I could actually achieve most of this in my current catch-all room, with some time and effort. I find it very difficult, though, to pull myself away from what I have to do (meet a deadline, do the laundry) to make my office space a priority.

  11. 11 anniegirl1138 September 7, 2008 at 8:31 am

    The space is important and it isn’t. Some of my best writing has happened sitting in the truck as we traveled or at the dining room table.

    But I really want an office because it makes it look to others as though I am really serious about my writing, which I am, but that doesn’t seem as obvious to my family and friends when they see me hunched over my computer at Starbucks or scribbling in a notebook at the park while my daughter plays. People have this idea that real writers have desks and offices and bookcases lined with all sorts of serious author stuff and impossibly boring “good for you” reads.

    The only thing that is really important is an idea and somewhere to jot it down, but the office is an alluring prospect.

  12. 12 Teresa Hall September 7, 2008 at 8:46 am

    My current writer’s space is less than ideal, I’m afraid. I have a corner of my kitchen that is my “office” but it sorely lacks privacy and space. My ideal writer’s space is a room with comfy furniture- a couch for reading, a desk for writing, a wall full of windows and a stereo for background music. The coffee pot is always hot and fresh, a laptop that is waiting for my touch, a filing system that takes care of itself – and a never ending supply of chocolate!

  13. 13 Cara September 7, 2008 at 9:07 am

    My writing space is a built-in desk and shelves in our breakfast nook. I suppose it’s a bit of an odd setup, but that’s just the way the house was built. My computer sits on the desk, along with my paperweight collection and other tchotchkes, my all important engagement calendar that rules my life, and my stack of notebooks. Not much feng shui here I’m afraid, but I find it comforting to write surrounded by the clutter of my favorite objects. I also like having the power of the internet at my fingertips for looking up that elusive quote or seeing if a word really means what I think it does!

    Sometimes I write curled up in my favorite oversized armchair in one of my many spiral or salt-and-pepper notebooks, and this is where I think I capture my most intimate thoughts. More often than not, one or both of my cats will curl up in my lap while I write, and I find there’s something very inspirational about a warm, purring mass of fur.

  14. 14 Betsy September 7, 2008 at 9:36 am

    A window overlooking a beautiful lake is the central point of my writing space. Outside the window is my rose garden featuring a colorful rose bush from each of my boys and my grandchildren. On a bookshelf next to my workstation are pictures of my family and on the walls are framed works of art from when my children were young. Many things in my writing room remind me of creative talents and the love of my family. The room is an especially important part of my daily activities.

  15. 15 Kathleen September 7, 2008 at 10:41 am

    Due to space constrictions, my space is divided between two bedrooms. My desk is in my bedroom. That’s where I brainstorm, write notes, maintain my calendar and pay bills. My computer resides in my daughter’s bedroom, which is where we have a cable connection. It’s inconvenient as the dickens and I argue continually with my daughter about her penchant for loading up my workstation with her phone, papers and junk.

  16. 16 Angie Goodloe September 7, 2008 at 11:03 am

    My dream writing space would be at the Oregon Coast with an ocean view, but alas- my current space is the family room/ play room/ reading room.
    This is so I can (technically) write while my daughter plays blissfully in my peripheral vision (ya right) and my son sleeps in is play pen/ bassinet. It works for now:)

  17. 17 Dena Dyer September 7, 2008 at 12:52 pm

    The specifics of my writing space have become less and less important as we’ve moved several times over the past few years. I write now anywhere the kids aren’t–but my laptop USUALLY shares space with a bunch of toys in our sunroom. It’s the only “extra” room in our current house. And that’s okay–because I’ve learned I can write anywhere! 🙂 I just need time, and a writing tool…pencil and paper or computer…whatever’s available.

    My IDEAL writing space is a book-lined guest house which would have white walls and lots of girly touches. I have two boys (three if you include my hubby), and I don’t have a pink, frilly space to call my own right now. Someday, maybe…

  18. 18 PeggyD. September 7, 2008 at 1:38 pm

    I must admit I haven’t thought about the space where I write. My favorite, most productive place to write has been at the nearest Borders bookstore, since I get so distracted and find other work to do around the house. It has been hard for me to stay focused at home, where my almost two year old will yell for me no matter what room I am in(and eventually find me)! I have a great space in my bedroom with a large desk and chair, where I had planned on scrapbooking, maybe I could rig up something there, and my husband can get the kids out of the house… and maybe I can dream on…

  19. 19 Heidi September 7, 2008 at 1:41 pm

    My writing space is “mental-physical” space. I brainstorm ideas, ledes and slants, and do research planning and pre-writing word play in my mobile mental office space. I work while running, cooking, or driving my toddler to library time. Of course my mental desktop often resembles our living room after a pint-sized playdate – there are fun (and sometimes messy) distractions everywhere. My physical office space is equally busy. I write in the eat-in kitchen area we don’t eat in, on a desk made from a fabulous 20th century, wormwood Mexican door that my husband can’t bear to give up. The bond between man and desk was forged when he wrote his dissertation on its uneven, beautiful-but-not-so-practical surface. Bookshelves line one wall and my printers, fax, and phone take up the desk space unused by my laptop. A large, sleek desk would take center stage in my dream writing space. Favorite pictures of my son would inspire me. All the extras (printer, fax, files) would have homes of their own away from the desktop. Quiet, dark tones would create calm and my dog would rest (as he does now) in his cozy bed beneath the desk.

  20. 20 Jennifer September 7, 2008 at 1:43 pm

    Right now we are working on creating a writing space that will fit with our family life. It is a small open room, off of our kitchen, that used to be a small eating area. We are painting the room a warm red, building in lots of bookshelves and installing pumpkin pine floors. We have a large desk that I will put the computer on and I hope to get a comfortable office chair. I am putting a small desk in it for my little ones to do their own “writing” while I try to get some work done. Hopefully, when it is complete I will have a space where I will be able to grab a few minutes here and there to get my thoughts down.

  21. 21 Renee September 7, 2008 at 1:54 pm

    I got my dream writing space last year, and now I’m afraid it’s in desperate need of cleaning and rearranging! I have a beautiful cherry desk, laptop, swivel chair, a throw rug, hardwood floors, French doors for privacy, olive green walls, two floor lamps, a bulletin board and bookshelf, and of course, photos of the kids up in one corner! My husband also got me one of those nifty little docking stations with speakers for my iPod so I’m all set with music and everything! It used to be our formal living room that we never used so we put the doors up and turned it into an office. Tonight I have to purge and file all paperwork that’s crowding my desk because I can’t find anything. Right now it’s mostly used for paying assignments, but I hope to be able to hunker down and start my novel really soon.

  22. 22 Katrina September 7, 2008 at 2:29 pm

    My office space has only one requirement (other than a clear desk, working internet connection, spiral notebook, mechanical pencil (no time to sharpen!), and a big window that I look through while doing my best problem solving): a clean kitchen. I have to walk through the kitchen to get to the bathroom, and if it’s not clean, I either get sucked into doing dishes, or I sit at the computer and feel guilty for “neglecting” my chores, neither of which is conducive to getting words on paper. My dream office? Why, it would have its own bathroom…*sigh*

  23. 23 Elizabeth M. September 7, 2008 at 2:38 pm

    I like a desk with a big work surface and it has to be in a room that gets tons of sunlight so there has to be at least 2 windows in there. It needs to have soft comfy carpeting for me to feel cozy and my chair has to be a desk chair but a comfy one. It needs to be completely quiet except I’d have the window open where I can hear the sounds of the birds chirping, children playing and lawnmowers mowing in the distance. I can also smell the freshly cut grass and flower perfumes wafting in from time to time. That’s pure heaven.

  24. 24 Beth@MommyComeLately September 7, 2008 at 3:34 pm

    My writing space is kind of like my writing–a work in progress.
    It’s not perfect–gives me something to keep working on.
    I have an office all my own. And I know that’s an advantage other writers don’t have. I have a great rolltop desk–but I never roll the top down to hide the clutter. Oh, well.
    I have shelves with matching baskets for fiing–ah, here the imperfection begins. Filing. Papers. I am more of a “piler” than a “filer.”
    But my office also has some of my favorite photos up on the wall right behind my desk, including the “breathe, breathe, breathe, breathe, breathe, breathe’ one.
    Good reminder that.
    Other must-have for my office: My computer has my music downloaded onto it. Must have appropriate background music to write and edit by.
    Oh–and my office has the mandatory door to shut when I really need to concentrate.
    I did re-paint the walls. Toned them down from bright red to a more mellow tone. Red was just too tense. Deadlines provide enough tension, thank you very much.

  25. 25 Sara Diane September 7, 2008 at 3:45 pm

    Over the years, I’ve learned how to write in just about any space available, including in a small hostel in Namibia, on airplanes, in doctors ofices and in my own bed. But my ideal space? I would love an attic room with large windows, so it would be full of natural light. I would have a desk tucked under one of those windows. On the wall that wasn’t letting in sunlight, I would have as many bookcases as I could fit, full of all the books that inspire me. Top it off with plants and some comfy couches or chairs for reading, and my writing space would be complete!

  26. 26 Christine Silva September 7, 2008 at 5:34 pm

    My writing space currently consists of the desktop computer in the center of the house (read: lots of kid interruptions but I can work without wondering if they are decorating the kitchen with fishy crackers) or my laptop in the spare bedroom or master bedroom or anywhere I can find a moment’s peace. I bring notebooks everywhere I go. I have a dream of bringing my laptop along and catching a few quiet hours at a café or at the park. But I’m scared of damaging the computer and I know that when I’m out with the kids I’d, you know, better keep an eye on them.

    In my wildest dreams I would paint the spare bedroom a comforting sage green, install bookshelves with lively houseplants spilling down, decorate with botanical prints and pitch my husband’s work stuff out the door. I would stake out my domain and it would be bliss. Soft music, great lighting, a view of the neighbor’s perfectly landscaped back yard. Ahhhhh. Rather unlikely, but perhaps someday…

  27. 27 Judy September 7, 2008 at 5:37 pm

    I love to write when I am sitting next to the river at the Indianapolis Art Center. There are a few benches set within the circle of trees on the IAC’s gorgeous grounds. The river is peaceful and beautiful. The sound of the water is calming and acts like a “white noise”. Occassionaly something will take my attention away from writing and give me an idea for a story and then I drift back into my paper and lose all sense of time until the timer on my cell phone goes off, letting me know that I am needed…

  28. 28 Lisa September 7, 2008 at 5:43 pm

    My current writing space is a room which serves as both an office and a guest bedroom. It is filled with clutter and stuff that doesn’t have another home. It’s not the best set up. But that’s where our computer is so that’s where I work. Although if I don’t need the computer and can write freehand, I love to go out on my back deck. I found my ideal writing space in a new house my husband and I were looking at. It was open and airy, with large windows and a beautiful view of the garden outside. There was room for a large desk and it had lots of built in bookshelves for all my books. I would add a nice lamp, some photos and a plant or two. That’s all I need and I’d be all set with my ideal space.

  29. 29 Kelli September 7, 2008 at 6:37 pm

    Oh, how I would love a space to call my own. Right now, it seems as if every room in my house is overrun by blocks, puzzle pieces, baby dolls, balls, trucks…you name it. I currently borrow some space at the local library from time to time, and if I’m really lucky I go to Barnes and Noble and settle into one of their huge armchairs.

    My ideal space would simply be somewhere comfortable, organized, peaceful, and free of distractions…for at least an hour or two.

  30. 30 elizaj September 7, 2008 at 7:24 pm

    Spacious, Airy and Clutter free. Pine bookshelves filled with delicious books. Cork floors. Private en-suite. Limited internet. Colorful, comfy chairs. Mellow wall decor. Ocean view. Salty air through the many windows. Quiet. Alone. Peaceful.

    I don’t really need a room to write. I need a room to retreat to, to regroup, refuel and nurture my muse in, because if I really want to write I’ll write anywhere. Jotting notes in the car, on the go. You know.

    But to really get into it and write, the magic for me is
    QUIET. PRIVACY. TIME. Oh. And something to say.

  31. 31 Melissa September 7, 2008 at 7:48 pm

    Right now my space is all about convenience. I have my laptop set up on a desk between the kitchen and living space, so it’s readily available whenever I have a few minutes. The desk is uncluttered, but not especially “writerly.” A dedicated space– an attractive space, even!– would be great, but if I have to choose between a perfect (private, beautiful) space and a “good-enough” space that I actually use, I’ll take the latter. At least until my children are older!

  32. 32 Pattie September 7, 2008 at 8:41 pm

    I think that for me, right now, it’s not so much about the physical space, as it is about the mental space. I can’t seem to carve out the necessary mental space for writing. My mind is full of ideas, but to find that mental space to be creative, to think, to feel, to compose…that is a rare thing these days.

    I used to think if I had a laptop of my own, I could write. Then it was a space of my own.

    The laptop crashed, and the desk is cluttered and messy. I have more responsibility in my day job. School has begun, and with it dance and other activities are in the schedule.

    All I need is some mental space.

  33. 33 karen September 7, 2008 at 8:41 pm

    I try not to get too hung up on the perfect writing space because realistically I need to be able to write anywhere and whenever I have a chunk of time. However…

    My desk with lots and lots of storage space and room to fit my knees under the keyboard would sit next to a window that looks out upon a group of Ponderosa pine trees where chickadees, nuthatches, hummingbirds, housefinches, crossbeaks and tanagers do their thing regardless of what kind of stall my writing mind happens to be.

    Throw in a comfortable rolley chair, a little background music to cut the dead space, plenty of natural light, and voila.

  34. 34 Laura P September 7, 2008 at 8:45 pm

    Since becoming a mom and working from home, my writing space has meant a corner of the living room. (Though, since becoming a single mom, there’s no longer a husband to complain about the messy desk, the overflowing file boxes and inevitable stacks of paper on the floor!)

    Prior to motherhood, I thought my writing space was crucial to inspiration and productivity. Nowadays, what I desire more is the mental space to organize my thoughts and map the story’s narrative. Once that (hopefully) happens, I can work almost anywhere—at a coffee shop or library desk, at the kitchen table with my back to the tune of the “Curious George” movie, hunched over a picnic table outside while keeping an eye out for my daughter—or at my desk in the corner of the living room after she has gone to bed.

    All that said, my ideal space would be tucked inside a sunny, white-walled room with hardwood floors; there would be dust-free bookshelves, gracious windows looking across either desert or ocean and plenty of plants.

    Most importantly, there would be a door leading directly outside. From there, a path would lead to sacred secret spaces that allow for contemplation.

  35. 35 Joelle September 7, 2008 at 11:04 pm

    My family will be moving into a new house soon, so I’ve been giving some thought to my writing space. First, I need to fix my laptop, because as a writer mama being able to always work in a room away from the kids is not possible. For our office, I’ve picked a room with a water view. I’d like to keep a clean desk, which I will struggle with. We’ll need separate filing cabinets for my writing, my husband’s work, and our household stuff. I’d like a comfortable seating area where I can curl up to read (while editing my writing or reading books on writing or information for an assignment). I’m hoping I can keep it simple (and clean), warm, inviting and child-proof so the kids (almost 1 and just 3) can come in and play quietly. But I’d also like a lock, so I can keep them out when I need.


  1. 1 WMBTSG Drawing for day seven: And the winner is… « The Writer Mama Riffs Trackback on September 8, 2008 at 6:31 pm
  2. 2 Weekend recap: In case you missed stuff « The Writer Mama Riffs Trackback on September 9, 2008 at 3:02 am
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