As the holiday season winds down, thoughts turn to the New Year and those pesky resolutions we all set and forget. This year instead of setting a writing resolution for the future, think of the present instead: The gift of a writing space sure to inspire.
As an inveterate intention-maker (and breaker), I speak from experience when I say that most people have forgotten or given up their shiny new resolutions before Valentine’s Day rolls around, and many even sooner. This leads to frustration and even backsliding on goals. So this year I challenge you to do something different.
Typical resolutions for writers range from production goals such as “write 250 words per day” to marketing goals “get a byline in the Huffington Post” or “gain 15,000 Twitter followers” to simple motivational commitments like “just write.” Whichever of these you choose, having a designated writing space can make the difference between success and failure as you move forward in the new year.
We don’t all have the luxury of a home office. As I write this post, I’m sitting in my 320 square foot shipping container home, lovingly referred to as Little Pod on the Prairie on my author site, www.nbwilliamsbooks.com. Both my husband and I work and live from this small area so my private writing space has been reduced to the essentials.
Still, it works.
I have a desk and comfortable chair that faces the window so I can feast my eyes on the rugged beauty of the Texas Hill Country. I have special warm woolen socks to wear while I write since Little Pod’s floor can be mighty cold in the winter and this Christmas I splurged on noise-cancelling headphones to block out the sounds of my husband’s conference calls. Everything I need is within arm’s reach, and not just because I’m living in what amounts to a giant-sized Igloo cooler.
If you arrange your writing space for comfort and ease of use, you can’t help but be productive. You’ll want to spend time there, eagerly retreating to your place of inspiration whenever you have a free moment. What makes you comfortable and inspires you? Is it having beautiful wallpaper on your computer screen? An app that makes your keyboard sound like an old-fashioned typewriter? Ambient lighting? A fast wi-fi connection?
Tastes vary and so does available square footage. Tuck your writing space into an unused closet, a dining room, or, if you have a laptop, a favorite overstuffed chair in the corner of the bedroom. Pick a favorite table at your local cafe. It doesn’t matter where it is, so long as you feel inspired there.
Don’t agonize over getting everything ‘just so’ right away. The right lighting, a good computer, and a comfortable chair may provide all you need. Embellish as you see fit, but don’t get hung up on perfection. Just create a writing space you want to be in and you’ll be in it more than you expect. The more you’re there, the more of a habit writing will become. Once it’s a habit there’s nothing that can stop you from reaching your writing goals.
So this new year, do something really new. Reach your writing goals effortlessly by giving yourself the gift of a writing space that inspires!