How to make the “write” work space for you
My writing space is a deeply personal realm. I enter it to make art; and while I can technically write anywhere, my home base for writing is a sanctuary for my creativity. I firmly believe that the self-expressive comfort of my desk, bookshelves, and bulletin board is directly related to my productivity and the quality of my writing.
Why? Because when creating my writing space, I adhered to these three “rules”:
Make it clean.
I would never get any writing done if my work space was dirty; therefore, it never is. Like an altar or sacred space, I take care to wipe up my desk’s coffee rings, put loose paper in its place, empty the waste bin and recycling, and dust once in a while. Tidying up can refer to your digital spaces as well. Purge your spam box, label and organize your inbox, and consider writing from a computer that isn’t connected to the internet to minimize distraction. De-clutter, because clutter affects us on a visceral level, making it difficult to concentrate and taking up valuable space. Get organized with baskets and desktop shelving so that everything has its place. Make a ritual of straightening and readying your writing space—lighting the same scented candle, sweeping junk into the bin, and so on—before you get to work.
Make it comfortable.
Pick the right chair, or use a sit-to-stand desk so you are never in one position for too long (because sitting is the new smoking!). Keep a soft throw blanket and a tabletop fan nearby to keep you warm or cool enough. Have a space to put a cup of tea or glass of wine within reach, but not where a spill would be catastrophic. Keep your favorite books, your journal, your preferred writing utensil, your laptop’s charger, and other essentials close. Do you prefer to face a window, the door, or a particular piece of wall art? Arrange your desk and chair accordingly. Consider natural sunlight, or full-spectrum bulbs, the best choices for minimizing eye strain, and think about adding a plant or two for extra, energizing oxygen.
Make it your own.
Dedicate a space in your home to writing and fill it with your favorite and most motivating things. A friend once commented that my writing desk couldn’t possibly be anyone else’s because it was so full of “me.” From the bulletin board pinning postcards of my literary favorites to the kitschy coffee mug packed with the only type of pens I use, my writing space is an extension of my identity. So ask yourself, how can I decorate this space with things that motivate me, inspire me, and make me feel creative? Then incorporate those objects—and only those objects, not non-writing-related clutter!—into your space so that when you look at them, you are reminded why you are there: to write.
Have you created a writing space in your home, and if so, how have you made it clean, comfortable, and your own?
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