In the first post of this series I talked about having chronological space available for writing, and how I’ve been trying to make that happen. So now that I’ve learned to prioritize my time and delegate tasks, what is the next step to getting back on the horse…er…in the saddle… wait, why are all of these idioms related to cowboys? Are there no perseverance-related sayings just for writers? Maybe not. Maybe there should be.
Anyway, I have these small gifts of time now, but I have an environmental problem. My house is full of pets, and laundry, and really fun video games, and all sorts of other stuff I could be doing. Given the opportunity, I will probably do anything else before sitting down to work. In order to actually work I have to eliminate those other options.
There isn’t a specific place in the house that is just for my writing. Yes, I have an office, with a very foreboding looking oak desk and a window, and yes, I have a laptop with wireless that I can use anywhere with a connection. Those are great for when I’m sitting down and just working on lyrics or editing a song that’s already mostly written. When I’m writing the music for a song, though, and playing with melodies and chords and really just getting started, I need a place where I can let go of my inhibitions and fears and just…well… play.
My favorite spot used to be the kitchen. I’d lean up on the counter, play my guitar, maybe pace up and down the galley layout a few times as I sang. Lately, though, I have a new spot in the house.
We’ve been renovating the enclosed balcony for awhile, but now it’s almost finished. It’s a “room”, but I can see outside, and I can close myself off from the rest of the house (read: cats) who might interrupt. The hardwood floors make me feel cozy and comfortable, but also lend some nice acoustics to the space. Also, if I can’t see anyone else around, it’s much easier for me to let go and act as if I can’t be overheard.
For someone who regularly performs on stage in front of others, it’s surprising to me how terrified I am of having someone listen in when I’m just starting with a song. This definitely relates to the next post in the series, so I won’t go too deeply into it now, but the first draft of a song is an intensely private experience for me. Any hint that I’m being listened to, and my creativity takes a hike.
The sunroom still needs some finishing touches. When I imagine how it will ultimately look, I think of a moroccan lounge or a classic library room.
Somewhere in between the two would be perfect.
I’ve bought some paint that looks like the inside of a butternut squash (isn’t orange supposed to inspire creativity?) which should go up on the walls soon.
A big comfy chair, a bookshelf full of my favorite books, and a couple of nice lamps… and definitely a small table, big enough only for a no
tebook and a glass of wine. Once those are in place, I’m confident I’ll have a physical space in which I can be happy and productive.