By Bryon Quertermous
I tend to be short of good ideas in my own life so when I see one from someone else I'm all over it to swipe it and claim the glory for myself. And one of the coolest ideas I've seen recently was over at Murderati where they all posted pictures of their work spaces then wrote a few words about how or why they chose that place. So when I ran the idea by the DSD brain trust they all were more than happy to jump gleefully into my thieving boat. Now, without further introduction, we present Do Some Damage Work Space Week. We start, of course, with my own workspace.
Prior to having kids, I loved writing in coffee shops. Starbucks are my favorite because (until recently at least) they didn't have free wireless internet access. I like everything about coffee shops, the subtle noise, the soothing cafe music, and low pressure purchasing environment. When I lived in Ann Arbor, before I was married, I did almost all of my writing at coffee shops. Once I had kids though, my process had to change. It's hard to justify leaving Becky alone with the kids while I go write every night, but if I wait until after they go to bed, it's almost 10pm and the places around here all shut down at 11. So Friday's I usually try to get out when they're open until midnight, but during the week, I'm doing my business at home. This also gives me more time to spend with Becky as well, and that's a swell prospect.
At home I have two writing stations. The first is the unofficial home office where our main computer, printer, scanner, and such is setup. This is where I handle the business of writing. I also like to use this computer for editing, because scrolling through a manuscript with a full mouse is better than with my laptop track pad. I also tend to write more out here in the winter because it's warmer than the room with the TV.
This office also serves to hold all of my professional mementos on those bookshelves. I have copies of the anthologies I've appeared in, pictures of me with authors I admire, and my bookshelf of reference books. That leg up there is from a Chuck Palahniuk signing I went to which is one of the coolest literary experiences I've had so far. There are also other writing trinkets and such that serve as inspiration.
But the place I do most of my composing is in our family room where our reclining couch and big TV are. Becky sits with Holly on one end, I sit on the end closest to the bookshelf and have done much good work (and a whole lot of crap as well). I like writing here when the kids are playing because I can feel multi-productive. But, given the right set of opportunities to be able to write full-time, I'd love to have a dedicated home office for the business stuff, but I'd like to be able to spend the days at a Starbucks or even more preferably, a nice greasy diner, clacking away at my imaginary worlds.