Author Bob Hostetler

A Writer’s Writing Space

Several weeks ago, I asked my awesome clients to share a few awesome words about their awesome writing spaces. (Some of them said I overuse the word “awesome,” but they’re just being picky.) It’s a subject that fascinates me and sometimes inspires a change or two to my own writing space, so I share their responses in the hopes that they do something similar for you:

_____

“My workspace is an organized mess. It’s almost shameful but it’s all work-related. There are research books, calendars, appointment lists, and goal sheets everywhere. I choose for my workspace to be this way because I can find things quickly without losing my train of thought” (Cindy Sproles, author of What Momma Left Behind).

_____

“My writing space is anywhere I can get away from my three kids. I wrote an entire book on my phone . . . during Karate lessons, play dates and waiting in the car while my wife was in Hobby Lobby (this alone provided at least three chapters).  For me, creativity doesn’t have a home address. Since the whole earth is full of God’s glory, and God is the most creative being in the universe, creativity is everywhere” (Dan Stanford, author of Losing the Cape: The Power of Ordinary in a World of Superheroes). 

_____

“My preference is to sit down at my desk in my office in my condo and start banging out an MS Word file with two fingers on the keyboard of my 27” iMac. In a perfect world I am left alone and, better yet, uninterrupted. In the old days I had classical music playing in the background. Nowadays it’s just silence because I’m listening to the words” (Bill Hendricks, author of The Person Called You: Why You’re Here, Why You Matter & What You Should Do With Your Life).

 _____

“My wife provided motivation by organizing the furniture in my writing space. She positioned my desk so I look through the double windows in our den, giving me fantastic, inspiring views. As I pause between difficult combat scenes, and look over a large, green lawn, azaleas in full bloom, and see stunning peaks of the Blue Ridge Mountains, peace and inspiration flow back abundantly. However, the desk, organized “my way,” has numerous files, a computer, printer, three lamps, four cabinets, bookcases, and boxes with more files all in near reach. She never complains, calling it ‘Jerry’s haven’” (Jerry Barnes, author of When Heaven Visits and the upcoming Angels on the Battlefield).

_____

“I live with my husband in HIS dream home—a 120-year-old Victorian he’s made into an eternal restoration project, largely unfinished save for one room he completed so I would have a writing space. My walls are chartreuse and white, giving it an energizing, clean, yet relaxing feel, that complement the hardwood floors. My glass-and-metal desk is kept company by my treadmill and favorite reading chair along with my reference library, Djembe drum (for fun), and the Klingon bat’leth I keep on my wall to remind me that I’m a warrior” (Lori Stanley Roeleveld, author of Running from a Crazy Man (and other adventures traveling with Jesus).

_____

“Although I have a formal office with a desk, most days I write at my dining room table. The room has lots of windows; is in close proximity to the fridge, pantry, and stove; and allows me to stand or sit using my portable adjustable desk. On days when the temperature is above 60 and below 80, I write from my screened porch that overlooks our neighbor’s pond” (Lori Hatcher, author of Refresh Your Faith: Uncommon Devotions from Every Book of the Bible).

_____

“Beside a window, I sit in an upholstered chair with enough space to sit with my ankles crisscrossed under me. My lovely little writing desk has turned legs and an antiqued white finish. With the door open, fresh air breezes inside along with a bird’s song and the sound of rustling leaves. The scents of lavender and lemongrass waft from a candle. In this space, my senses are awakened, my imagination takes over, and I write the stories that make my heart love, laugh, and sometimes tremble” (Leslie Kirby DeVooght, www.lesliedevooght.com).

_____

“My writing space is in the kitchen, squeezed on a narrow section of counter between the stove and the bread bowl. We have to be careful using the right-hand burners lest my computer cord fry. But my writing space isn’t defined by space; it’s defined by time. I do most of my writing in the extreme early morning, long before the family gets up and the pressures of the day interfere. You’d be surprised what gets accomplished at 4 a.m. on this tiny counter space” (Patrice Lewis, www.patricelewis.com).

_____

“I surround myself with nostalgia. My desk is crowded with a 100-year old typewriter, a light-up globe, Snoopy calendar, inspiring quotes, and a picture of the three most important people in the world: my husband and our two sons. The walls are covered in my art, my sister’s art, posters of my book covers, and pictures of my boys. To quote Julie Andrews: ‘These are a few of my favorite things’ . . . that inspire me” (Michelle Shocklee, author of the upcoming Under the Tulip Tree).

_____

“My writing space is quiet and inspiring: my desk at home with a portrait of my mother-in-law and pictures of my favorite things on my desk. It jars my mind and motivates my writing.  It becomes my why do I write instead of how to write” (Jane Jenkins Herlong, author of Rhinestones on my Flip-Flops).

_____

“I have a lovely office in our log home overlooking an expansive Idaho river valley. But my writing space is the place in my head where I live, take copious notes of my world, and craft word pictures that may or may not find escape onto a page” (Pam Thorson, www.pamthorson.com).

_____

How about you? What’s your writing space like?

 

 

Leave a Comment

Goal-Setting (and Revising)

I’m an inveterate goal-setter. From way back. I started setting yearly goals at the age of 19, maybe before. I remember that set of goals because that was the first time I formulated a “lifetime goal” to write a book. One book. I figured, how many people manage to write …

Read More

The Best Ways to Submit Your Work

I started writing for publication back when dinosaurs roamed the earth. The process was fairly simple then, if unpromising of success. I wrote a query, article, or book proposal, put it into an envelope along with a self-addressed, stamped envelope (SASE) for its return, sealed it, and mailed it. And …

Read More

Multigenre Writing: Good or Bad Idea?

One of this blog’s readers recently directed the following question to me: You’ve been a successful writer in several genres. Is that possible for someone starting out today? I could debate the accuracy of the adjective “successful,” but I’ll let that slip for now. It’s true that I have written …

Read More

Shakespeare on Writing

Most of those who know me know that I’m something of a Shakespeare nut. That nuttiness led me to write my award-winning book, The Bard and the Bible: A Shakespeare Devotional, which pairs quotes from his works with verses from the King James Version of the Bible, as the KJV …

Read More

Beating Writer’s Block

Some writers scoff at the idea of “writer’s block”—that moment when the writer’s brain seems to freeze and the flow of words seems to have turned off like a faucet. Others swear that it’s a real thing, the bane of the writing life. I tend to think it has more …

Read More

Be a Luddite, Not a Lunkhead

I recently read a letter to the editor in a writers magazine in which an aspiring writer of advanced years bemoaned those publishers who accept only electronic submissions (via email or website). “Surely I am not the only soul who still works with a typewriter,” the correspondent wrote. “Possibly it’s …

Read More

Instrument (A Writer’s Prayer)

God, from ancient days to modern times, you have chosen human language to communicate with men and women; in fact, you are a writer yourself, having written your commandments in tablets of stone, my name in the Lamb’s Book of Life, and your Word in my heart. You have also …

Read More

Quotes from Recent Books I’ve Read

Prolific western writer Louis L’Amour wrote in his autobiographical Education of a Wandering Man, “A writer’s brain is like a magician’s hat.  If you’re going to get anything out of it, you have to put something in first.” That’s why reading well and widely is crucial to a writer’s development. You …

Read More