The best place to write

den with fireplace

I wonder if you’re like me. When I was Thinking About Writing (before I actually was writing more than a few pages here and there), I’d daydream about a writing nook. It’d have a sleek laptop. Stacks of books around. (I must’ve been born in a library; physical books — beside their other merits — comfort me by their presence and easy accessibility.) There’d be a plush old couch with pillows of velvet and Turkish tapestry. And a cozy lap quilt. To one side I’d have the cast iron (yikes, it’s heavy) typewriter I picked up at a second-hand store. A cup of tea or coffee steaming on the table.


But of course…that’s the point. Perfect for a daydream (even if your particulars differ from mine). Perfect for procrastinating (“Sorry, can’t write properly and in a dedicated manner yet because I don’t have all my accoutrements.”) I wonder if these published authors ever wrestled with that same demon. From reading that post, I’m thinking…no. Like Stephen King (a fact you will have learned if you read his excellent On Writing), even a cramped laundry space in a trailer will work.

And I really love to write. Exploring characters. Weaving a story. Wondering what the hell should come next.

After wrestling for too long with insecurities and those evil bastards in your head that will question your every move when you travel into unfamiliar territory, I am writing. Mostly I write using a not-so-new iMac at a desk that works equally well standing up or sitting on a tall stool. Sometimes I take my iPad and a bluetooth keyboard to the living room or the garden.

I type, but am intrigued by those authors who dictate; I don’t know if that’s for me. And I’ve just picked up Joanna Penn’s The Healthy Writer as she’s invariably full of good advice and I want to steer my habits in a sustainable direction.

What about you?

I hope you’re not still stuck in the “everything must be perfect before I can pursue my goals” mode.

There’s a quote from years ago that applies here. “The best camera is the one you have with you.” Adapted for writing, “The best place to write is the one you use.”



Photo by ptrikutam on Unsplash

Waiting for reviews

I find myself in a nebulous world. Past Sins was published nearly a month ago and it’s not yet received any reviews. Is one supposed to talk about these things? I’m a newish author — at least in the published sense. I don’t know the protocol.

It seems this is much like that moment after you give your mother her Christmas present. She tears off the wrapping (or carefully removes it, if she’s a saver) and peels back the tissue paper. You wait for the reaction. Does she like it?

You, dear readers, are the recipients of my present and I anxiously await your thoughts. Your interpretation. Your observations. My mind, my creation — filtered through your sensibilities and experience.

My book stands on its own. For better or worse, I acknowledge this thing that I’ve made. I don’t ask for validation. I will write regardless. Lost in the minds of my characters, reveling in their worries and hatreds and confusion and passion.

But without reviews I am ever frozen in time. The tissue paper crinkles. Your face rises to mine. What does your expression say?



Photo by JESHOOTS.COM on Unsplash.