Ah yes! The perfect writing spot. A mountaintop overlooking rivers and valleys. Or along a rugged shoreline where the ocean spews its powerful mists. For someone else, the penthouse view in a bustling city is ideal. Perhaps you prefer the dark, mysterious quiet of the forest. Any or all of these spots is perfect for writing. In fact, when we close our eyes and imagine our ideal writing space, more than likely one of the above images come to mind.
In reality many of us write in less than ideal places, surrounded by family, pets, noise and clutter. We may write at the dining room table. Or a little corner of our bedroom. Some might have a writing nook in the basement where we never see the light of day. There are those of us who are lucky enough to have our own office, away from distractions.
I once had my own writing space: a spare bedroom which I turned into a lovely office, complete with bookshelves, a nice desk, a stereo, and a big, south-facing window. I got a tremendous amount of work done in there. Then my mother, God rest her soul, shamed me into turning that space into a bedroom for my younger daughter – who by the way, really, really did not want to sleep in it by herself and preferred sharing a room with her sister. That was 25 years ago, and I’ve never had my own writing space since.
I miss an office of my own, where no one else’s clutter-piles hide my works-in-progress, or where my computer isn’t “borrowed” for half a day, or where I can find my pens and paperclips and dictionary without a search party.
I write where I can find a place to park myself. And guess what? I’m still productive. An office isn’t absolutely necessary, though it would be lovely to have. I would get a lot more work done in my designated space, and I would probably be a more pleasant person to be around. However, I haven’t let lack of privacy, space or convenience stop me. And you shouldn’t let it stop you, either. Don’t wait for the ideal conditions before you start writing. If you do, you may never begin.