All good writers have a special place they go to when they are inspired to write. This isn’t the place to gather inspiration– I’m talking about the place where inspiration spills out of their heads. Having spent most of the last year on the road, I’ve tried hard to find that place and make an office space wherever I go. I wrote my first novel at desk built by hand. It was next to lights that provided lovely light in the morning and sat next to french windows looking out to the front garden. Before then, I worked primarily outside in Portland. That space too had great lighting and put me right in the middle of all the vegetation I was studying. I enjoyed the warmth of the space and took full advantage of the rain-less summers in Portland.
All of these experiences led me to a book. Go figure. It’s called Great House by Nicole Krauss. It’s the story of a desk and how it ties the lives of several people together. I never thought a book (or desk in this case) could be such an inspiration. I wanted nothing more than a desk with a story like that to bring my creative juices out. I moved back to Atlanta and was reunited with the desk of my young adulthood: a dark wood hepplewhite desk with long, lean legs. My mom gave me the lowdown on the piece. At some point in her illustrious interior design career she studied furniture periods and schooled me on the desk’s curves, hardware, and joints.
I set up the desk next to a few shelves in my room. I brought back a decent library from my old apartment in Brooklyn and made a new space for my writing at home. I always hang a small clothesline with cards, photos, and trinkets pinned to a string. It’s not so much a vision board as it is a section I set aside for memories and nostalgia. These things keep me grateful when life gets a little too wild.
I sit at the desk and write, edit, type, and create. When I sit down to work, it feels like the right place to get stuff done. It feels like someone’s already blessed the piece with good vibes and it’s ready to be used to bring more stories alive. It’s tucked away in a private corner where I can work heads down without interruption for hours on end.
I’m charged up– ready to work!