Something I think is important for me to do as a new writer is to create space. Not only create space in my life in terms of time to write, but also a comfortable physical place to go when I want to focus.
I own a small company that has a lot of unexpected daily scheduling items. I often don’t know when I am going to have to leave the house to go out on a job at the last-minute, or have to triage a ton of phone calls and emails, or help an employee. I have an on-call 24/7 kind of business. This is one of my biggest distractions when it comes to writing. Heck, this is one of my biggest distractions when it comes to life! I can never get away from it; can never really “unplug.” I’m not much of a planner (more on organization in future posts, I’m sure) so to have things constantly pop up in “now” status is frustrating for me. When I am writing, I usually feel like I need an open-ended window of time to be able to stop where it is natural for me to stop, or keep going if I the creativity is flowing. I have, however, taken some steps to minimize the interruptions by speaking with my business partner and changing my voice mail message to let clients know when and how they will be contacted back if it is not an emergency. I have also begun to schedule what work I can and decline work that is not scheduled in advance. I have in essence, put limits on my availability. This has helped tremendously and created space for me from a hectic work environment. At home, I have been lucky that my family has been receptive to giving me the time I need to take for myself. I guess they see how happy this makes me, or they don’t mind the house being a little (a lot) messier. Above all, what I needed to do was learn to draw boundaries around my time. This was a life skill I seemed to be lacking.
I have also created the room in this picture to have a peaceful place to write. I painted it a soothing color I love. I know my style may not be for everyone but I have surrounded my writing “nest” with things that I think are beautiful and meaningful and inspiring. No work other than writing is allowed in this room! Two things I collect are crystals/mineral specimens and antique bottles so they are both represented here. They just make me happy. I have placed pictures of angels and a pair of wings on the walls to remind me that I am never alone and should I need help I only need to ask. I have also included a very small portion of my book collection. I have a deep love of books and these remind me what I’m aiming for; publication! I think it is very important to remember to be grateful so I have added “Take A Deep Breath And Take In The Abundance Of Life” on the wall to keep me focused on my many blessings. One of the most important things in the room is one of the few pictures I possess of my dad and I together. We are walking hand in hand in a wide open meadow in Yosemite National Park when I was about two years old. We didn’t have a close relationship during his lifetime and he passed away three years ago. This is how I stay connected to where I came from and it is a good reminder that I must overcome what I have always perceived as a broken childhood and grow the Hell up. I also have a window to look out of as I daydream and make my dreams come true. The one thing I am deeply unhappy with in this room is the chair. The God-awful chair. It is the most hideous, pleathered, uncomfortable, falling apart, cheap thing I could imagine. The chair cover is more expensive than the chair and that won’t stay on. It is as if the cover doesn’t even want to be near it! I borrowed the chair from my business partner because it was languishing in her basement and I had nothing to sit on. It is actually up on granite blocks to accommodate the legs of the laptop desk I built yesterday (all by myself) beneath it. I will be upgrading this shabby monstrosity as soon as I can! The poster board and cork panels stacked by the window will be my cheap version of a pin board instead of a store bought one ($50 YIKES!!) Hopefully with a little hot glue and effort it will become my story board for my book. Yesterday I dusted and cleaned in preparation for heavy use of this marvelous space I have created. With new oil in the diffuser (I love things to smell good) I am ready to go!