I recently heard a discussion about the importance of having a writing space, essentially a home office, where you can write and update your blog.
I have a room at home that I consider my “office.” It’s my writing space where I produce most of the posts on this blog.
Is it absolutely necessary? Well, that’s a question with a complicated answer.
I do think it’s important to have a writing space where you can sit down, isolate yourself to whatever extent you need to, and compose and create to your heart’s content. Some of us need complete silence to write effectively. Others need at least a little noise. (I belong to the latter group.)
But having a dedicated space can be a good thing when it comes to getting comfortable and finding the “zone” for writing. It can also serve as a kind of “boundary” for your family so that they know that when you’re there, you need to be left alone long enough to complete your task.
What should a writing space include?
Ultimately, the answer depends on the individual. Mine contains a nice computer desk with space for a computer and monitor, a printer, and place for my coffee (or Diet Coke) and books that I may use for reference. It’s also where I have some little gadgets that can cause me enough distraction when I need it.
I also have a nice speaker that I can use to listen to music or other sounds when I need that kind of distraction.
Nearby is a television where I might throw in an movie I’ve seen before just so I have some sort of background noise.
And of course, there’s a chair, one I find comfortable, for sitting for periods of time at the desk. It turns out this particular chair was an industrial office chair my workplace was actually throwing away in favor of something newer and presumably more comfortable. (I like this chair better, and I use an identical model at my desk at work, too.)
Your writing space has to work for you.
There is plenty of advice to be found when it comes to creating your best writing space.
This one points out the importance of keeping it clutter-free and even suggests adding some plants. My place has plenty of clutter, but I tend to work a little better when there’s at least a little of it.
Multiple screens might actually improve your productivity, this one says.
And this one suggests that you should fill your space with items, quotes, and/or photographs that inspire you and fuel your creativity.
You have to figure out what makes you comfortable and what inspires you when you sit down to write. Whatever those ingredients are and whatever that atmosphere is, that’s what should be incorporated into your writing space.
Even so, you might still write elsewhere.
There are times when I’ll trade my writing space for the couch and a laptop. With the dog cuddled up next to me, sometimes I can write just as well there and even more comfortably. But the drawback there is that sometimes I get too comfortable and end up dozing off rather than completing a post.
Other times, I may take my laptop to a restaurant or a coffee shop and, while dining alone, surf for pieces I might write about or write actual posts on the go.
For me, it’s a little bit of variety that helps the creative juices flowing.
Just as we get bored sometimes with one topic, we might get an occasional hint of boredom in the same place every time you write.
If you aren’t able to write effectively in your writing space because you’re always looking for somewhere else to get creative, that might be a sign that something’s wrong with your space. In that case, you may need to change things up.
An occasional desire, however, to write somewhere else is not, in my opinion, a bad thing at all.
In fact, it might just give you the opportunity to people-watch long enough to find a new topic your writing space may not have ever been able to provide.