Back in 2009 when I became more serious about writing (and was working on my humor book, Musings on Minutiae) it was always difficult for me to find a place in my home where I could focus stay away from distractions, and become one with the words on the laptop screen. This was made even more difficult inside of a one bedroom apartment where white walls and venetian blinds made things about as sterile as humanly possible.
Soon after, my (now) wife and I moved into our house in Orlando, Florida and we set aside a room for use as an office. (Okay, in actuality, it started out as a man cave, but I never set foot inside of it, so eventually it became the office.) Here’s the funny thing – we’ve been here for two years and nothing I’ve written — not blog posts nor humor columns nor comic books were ever written inside that room. For whatever reason, inspiration always struck as I sat on our living room couch or while I sat uncomfortably at our dinner table. I was determined to figure out how to make our office the place where my muse would visit and I could get some work done, but I just couldn’t get the place to vibe. Out of pure frustration, I even purchased and read a book called A Writer’s Space: Make Room to Dream, to Work, to Write by Eric Maisel (Amazon.com) which attempts to guide a frustrating writer to find a productive space. Regardless of what I did, I couldn’t seem to make the space comfortable. In Stephen King’s wonderful memoir/guidebook, On Writing, he admits to doing his best work in a hallway with a typewriting on his lap. It felt hopefully for a while.
One day as I walked around the room attempting to feng shui the crap out of it, it dawned on me that the issue was more than likely the desk itself. It was something that belonged in a college dorm room and not in the office of a budding writer. It was large, bulky, and made of the compressed plywood that would give you splinters if you happened to touch it in the wrong place. I figured that before any serious writing would happen in that room, I’d need to replace the desk and get something a little bit more mature… a big-boy desk, if you will.
My wonderful wife purchased a great, REAL WOOD desk for Christmas this year and I couldn’t be more excited. It’s a small corner desk from Pier One which requires no tools to put together, so I had it together and ready to go in a matter of minutes. Though smaller than my previous desk, I’m not afforded as much space for general nick-knacks and clutter (which is good, to avoid distraction), and I’ve rearranged the room yet again to fit it into the corner which has dramatically opened up the room. As the new year continues I look forward to seeing if this is a place where I’ll be able to flex some creative muscles.
This blog post was written from said desk, so I like to think I’m on the right track.