Wednesday, May 26, 2010

A Corner of My Own

Carving a creative space out of our smallish and crowded house seems to be an ongoing theme in my life (and this here blog).

Nearly two years ago, I cleaned up a desk in our living room to make myself a nice little writing spot (with a view). Not long after I took this picture, though, our laptop lost its ability to talk to its own screen, and C purchased a desktop, which needed a surface to live on. So it ended up, you guessed it, on my little desk. Of course a computer should have been the ideal addition to my spot--only it is C's computer, meaning he's sitting his butt in front of it to work most of the time and let's just say he's not the most tidy person on earth--so any surface of the desk not occupied by monitor or keyboard is overflowing with papers, and various and sundry crap (more on the frustrations of a shared computer here).

For a while I moved operations to a small blue table in my bedroom, but that table was soon taken over by my sewing machine and I set up an even smaller table, squeezed between the blue sewing table and the Big Ugly Chair, but the table is so small, and the lighting (at night) so poor, I rarely, if ever, used it (preferring instead, to write in bed).

I've had my eye out for a fold-down writing desk for a little while, and finally picked one up a couple of weeks ago while my mom and I were antiquing.

Almost immediately I succumbed to buyer's remorse. As we carried it out to the car, I noticed the sides are veneered particle board, not solid wood, the back is Masonite and the bottoms of the drawers coated with some plastic fake-wood material. I wished I'd inspected it more closely before I'd paid for it. Then we went to another antique store, and I found a desk that was an actual antique and not that much more expensive than the one I bought (though still not quite perfect). The drawer pulls are already starting to come loose (with some assistance from little hands, I believe). The desk surface is too high for a laptop (you know, that imaginary MacBook I can't stop talking about).

But, it does fin in the corner of my room (goodbye, Big Ugly Chair--the irony being I had just recently started to sit in the BUC, rather than pile clothes on it), and it has room for my writing books, a pencil holder, and two drawers for stuff. And not a moment too soon, either. Today is the first day of an online writing class I'm taking (The advanced version of Kate Hopper's Mother Words, which I took last summer--it look like another session will take place next winter; I highly recommend it!).

I may be spending a little less time in this space over the next few months, as I give my five a.m.'s to the class, but I'll check in. Maybe more pictures, fewer words, or maybe I'll post some of my work from class (yikes!). In any case, I'm excited for the class--it helps me immensely to have the motivation and structure of lectures and assignments; I appear to lack the discipline to motivate myself. And we'll see if having a corner of my own helps out with the creative process, or if not having my own creative space has just been an excuse for procrastination.

How have you made your existing space work for your creative needs?


  1. What a lovely desk. I live and work in squalor - it doesn't really "work" but it's what I can manage just now. someday I'd like a beautiful desk, but if I had one now I'd just pile stuff on it.

  2. It's all really very lovely you know :)


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