Read Around the Rainbow: My Ideal Writing Shack

I am so pleased to be joining in with the first entries in the Read Around the Rainbow Blog Ring. Thanks again to Ally, A.L. Lester, for organising us. I can’t wait to read everyone else’s posts!

I occasionally get inspiration while out and about and scribble something down in a notebook. But most of the time, I require a designated place and time to focus on my writing. However, when the lovely Nell Iris suggested this topic, I scratched my head as it’s not something I’ve much considered.

The amount of thought and care many authors put into their writing location is enviable. Nell often posts the most gorgeous pics on social media, full of seemingly effortless Scandinavian style, with a writing nook by a glowing hearth, or a specific area bright with fairy lights and candles. Truly magical.

In contrast, I simply write at my dining room table, facing a blank wall! But since this topic has made me ponder about where I write, perhaps that’s not a coincidence after all. Perhaps I need to look at something bland to visualise characters and situations in my mind’s eye? In my upcoming April story, for JMS Books, London in the Rain, while gazing at the wall, I could imagine my main character, Raymond, standing at the top of his office building deep in thought, looking over the foggy rooftops of 1930s London before descending the stairs to the rain-slicked pavements towards Soho and solace.

In an ideal world, I would love a study for writing. When I visualise this room, I realise I have modelled it on the middle room (as opposed to the front room, or the back room, aka the kitchen) in my grandmother’s house. The front room was a rather cold and chilly space, with glass-fronted cabinets containing often washed china ornaments, formal family photographs on the walls and a distinctly slippery and uncomfortable suite of furniture.

I remember when on regular visits to my grandmother’s as a child, being occasionally summoned into the front room to greet important guests. I would perch on the slippery sofa, my bottom slowly sliding off the surface, terrified that I would embarrass my grandmother by ending up on the floor in an unedifying heap!

The back room or kitchen was the hub of the house (the actual cooking took place in the scullery,) always full of activity, where my grandmother sewed, painted, listened to the wireless (as she called it) and welcomed neighbours for cups of tea and Welsh cakes. Apart from the hottest summer days, there was always a fire blazing, where we made toast at teatime.

But the middle room was a quiet, friendly space, lit by one sunny window, with none of the bustle of the kitchen or the off-putting sterility of the front room. Here, my mother did her homework and piano practice as a schoolgirl, my grandfather had his writing desk, and most of all, there were plenty of packed bookshelves. I remember spending many a peaceful afternoon curled up there, reading. So my ideal writing shack would be similar in atmosphere. I can see a cosy book-lined room with a comfortable-sized desk and a single window for brightness. In this peaceful space, I could comfortably describe all the characters who flit through my mind, chasing their happy ever afters.

My post will be linked on the last Friday of every month with posts from fellow blog ring members. There are seven other writers blogging in the Read Around the Rainbow Webring this month…find their posts about their ideal writing shacks here!

Nell Iris : Ofelia Grand : Addison Albright : Amy Spector : Fiona Glass : K. L. Noone : A.L. Lester

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