Posts Tagged ‘writing space’

Where is the Best Place to Write?

We’ve talked about writing locations before, Squiders, about libraries and coffee shops and home offices and whatnot. We’ve talked about setting up our own and what mine looks like (though the images seem to have been eaten in the website hacking snafu of October 2016) and talked about the pros and cons of different locations.

But recently, when I was on my way out to the coffee shop for writing again, my husband asked if I was really more efficient when I went out. And, to be honest, I didn’t know. I do like coffee shops because they allow me to escape from the house and because I like coffee (and tea, and hot cocoa, and iced tea, and…) but I don’t actually know that I am more productive than I am sitting at home in the office, for example.

So I’ve made a spreadsheet.

Have I concluded anything? Not yet. I suspect I need a lot more data (and I’ve been lazy this week as you can see), and I’m wondering if I need a few more columns. (I also need to be consistent on times–I’m trying to do 24hr time so it’s clear when I’m writing in the evening vs the morning to see if time of day is a factor–but I can see off the top of my head that at least the second entry on the 4th needs to be changed to evening.)

I’m also not sure if converting to words/hour is helpful. Like, that fifteen minutes at the library on the third. Would my output have been the same had I written for the full hour? Hard to say. Maybe things were really flowing. Or maybe I would have hit a block 100 words later.

Another thing that may be unduly influencing things is where I am. Some scenes are almost word for word reused from the last draft, so I’m just modifying wording or adding in a little more nuance this time through, and that certainly goes much faster. Some scenes are brand new and difficult (ala the entry on the second) and that really eats my word count.

Is word count even a good marker for telling how much I’m getting done? Not sure what else to use.

Well, I’m at 94K for the rewrite now, and I’m making decent progress, so perhaps in a month we’ll be done (finally!) and I can work on a different project which might be more consistent on scene difficulty. (That probably doesn’t exist.)

Thoughts, squiders? Better way to track? Maybe a column for “how was the flow today” with a scale to 1-10.

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How Important is Your Writing Space?

We’re just going to question everything, apparently.

I’ve seen a lot of talk lately about the importance of setting up your writing space. In theory, I think this is supposed to increase your productivity or the ease of your writing flow or something along those lines.

And do they?

You’ll have to correct me, Squiders, if I am wildly off-base, but I kind of feel like the whole “writing space” thing is just a way to procrastinate set up as creativity.

Is it good to have some place dedicated to writing? Oh, probably. You certainly need somewhere where you can work, where your kids/significant other/cat won’t bother you, some place where you can relax and get things done. But does it need to be this big ToDo, with fancy wall hangings and inspired decor?

I would argue no.

Why?

Well, I don’t know about you guys, but I write all over the place. I write at the library. I write at various coffee shops. And even around the house, I write in the office, at the dining room table, in front of the TV while my husband plays Skyrim. Sometimes I write in bed (though not often because frankly it’s not that comfortable and because the laptop gets suspiciously hot to the touch).

And maybe there are people out there who can only write in one spot, and only if things are laid out in the best creative feng shui, but that seems inefficient to me and I kind of feel sorry for those people.

But because people like these sort of things, here’s my “writing space” (where I am currently writing this blog post, and where I do my freelance editing work, and write my serial and short stories, and sometimes novels, and also where I pay my bills, play on Tumblr, and listen to the current music of choice).

The space itself:
Writing space

You’ll notice there’s lots of books. And tribbles. And crocheted squids.

You’ll also notice that it’s wedged in the corner instead of facing my lovely, large bay window where I could, in theory, spy on my neighbors, because my “writing space” shares a room with my husband’s desk, the filing cabinet, our library, and occasionally a large puzzle in the middle of being done.

books

Here’s a sampling of books.

And here’s the one attempt I made at one point toward having a “proper” writing space:

Writing flair

They say “Imagine, Create, Inspire” and I never ever look at them.

So, what do you think, Squiders? Do you need a writing space? Or is that time that could be better used actually writing?