6 Things To Set Up Your Workspace
I don’t know about you, but there are times where I can write anywhere (mostly when I’m in the zone) and then there are times when I can’t write just anywhere. These times require I go to my designated workspace.
This space doesn’t have to be a desk or office. Some people write in the laundry room, some in the bathtub, Hemingway wrote standing up, another writer wrote on a stool by the basement furnace. Wherever you write make sure it is a place that fuels your creativity while also leaving you undisturbed. When you find that space, here are some things to think about while making it your own.
1. Writing Tools
What tool really gets the words flowing on the page?
- Desktop computer – for the stationary home office writers.
- Laptop – for the library, coffee shop, and move-about-the-house writers.
- Tablet – for the in-app writers.
- Cellphone – for the short spurt text writers.
- Pen/Pencil and Paper – for the traditional, tactile writers.
Whatever works for you make sure your workspace has it. You can’t do any writing without it, but I also suggest having more than one type of writing tool. For you stationary people, a mobile method could work for days when a change of scenery is necessary. You on-the-go writers should have a nice home for your writing like a cloud service to backup your work. Pen and paper people do twice the work, so maybe a computer or mobile device with decent talk-to-text features will save your fingers.
2. Everything Within Reach
The last thing you need when inspiration strikes is a scavenger hunt. Keep all your writing supplies together, so when it’s time to go to your favorite cafe to write that new chapter you don’t get there and realize your laptop’s power cord is under the couch.
3. Elbow Room
Is there enough space for you to work comfortably? For some, you need to spread out, stretch your legs and really relax before getting to work. Then, on the opposite end, there are those who only need enough space to move their hands across the keys. I’m looking you cramped cellphone writers on the subway. If you’re like me, you’re somewhere in between and there is nothing wrong with that so long as you are comfortable.
4. Do Not Disturb
The whole point of having a workspace is to work, but not everyone needs to be alone while doing this. J.K. Rowling once said when she wrote in cafés she had just moved to another kind of noise. Which is true. Sometimes the din around the house can be distracting. If this is causing problems with your work then you need a workspace #2. Ask yourself: Do I need complete silence right now or just noise I can tune out?
In the past I have taken refuge in my car to get away for a moment to write. I would drive to a parking lot twenty minutes away (enough time to clear my head), park my car facing a wall or group of trees, climb into the backseat and write until the words ran out. It wasn’t the easiest thing to explain to people, but I got my work done for the day.
5. Writer’s Eye Candy
We all know that the brain responds better to visual stimuli, right? This could be anything. A blank wall free of distractions, an abstract painting to get the mind thinking outside the box, trees and general nature to feel more centered, a picture of your favorite author to fuel ambition, or a library full of other people working hard to keep you motivated. Any of these could work and there are tons of other possibilities out there for you to stumble upon.
6. Beverage of Choice
Everyone has heard of writers being addicted to coffee, but from a non-coffee drinker, I can tell you that it does not have to be the only drink you consume once you become a writer. I have a nice glass of ice water on hand right now. Ah, refreshing!
For many writers, the beverage is a close companion during those arduous writing sessions. There’s something comforting about a nice warm, fragrant cup of whatever it is you choose to drink.
So when you are out there searching for your special writing place, make sure you give this list some consideration. Perhaps you like writing outside, but need a cup of cocoa to get the words warmed up. Find a park near your house or favorite cocoa spot. You don’t have to go out of your way to get everything you need, just a manageable plan.