Success only flourishes in perseverance -- ceaseless, restless perseverance.
--Baron Manfred Von Richtofen

Monday, August 27, 2012

Your Ideal Writing Environment

One of my ideal environments!
Back at the Storymakers conference in May, keynote speaker Kevin J. Anderson offered his eleven tips to become a more productive writer. Now if I could be even a quarter as productive as he is, that would be fantastic! The one suggestion he made that resonated most with me was to create your ideal writing environment. That was something I knew I needed to work on.

That was the first week of May. This summer packed a pretty nasty emotional punch and it isn't until now that I've actually been able to think about my ideal writing environment.

As you might gather from the title of this blog, I have a nice little writing space, a comfy chair, a fantastic view. But the funny thing is that I don't actually do a lot of writing up there. I share the office with my husband and when our son came home from college (the same day as the writing conference), it became his storage room too. It's cluttered and I don't always feel comfortable there. I do intend to get my office cleaned up and organized, but really, I write anywhere and everywhere. On the couch, at the table, in bed, at the park, in the car... I decided it was more important to create my ideal emotional writing environment rather than focus on the physical space.

You see, I have a difficult time getting anything done when I am depressed, anxious, angry, tired, etc. In order to create a more ideal emotional environment, I am concentrating on the following:

Going to bed on time

Getting up on time


Avoiding overeating (That nasty emotional sucker punch really threw me for a loop in this department.) 
Staying in tune with God

You see, if I can take care of myself physically, emotionally, and spiritually, I am much more likely to write well and achieve my goals. I figure if writing is a part of God's plan for me, then He will help me get my act together!

I started last week, and I wrote 14 pages! That's amazing for me. I feel a lot happier too.

So, what does your ideal writing environment look like?


Misha Gericke said...

Hahahaha I'm so used to writing in bed that I don't know any more. :-P

Seriously though, I am in the process of looking for a nice writing desk that will become my writing zone. Because I'm realizing more and more that I need a place to go to where I can go: "Okay, the moment I sit down here, the only thing I'll do is write."

I don't have that now, but while I'm looking, I'm going on with writing in bed.

Also, I'm with you on all the things you need. Especially with being in tune with God. If you read my TCoML post from today, you'll see that I've had some issues with that lately, but it's going better, so hopefully my writing will bloom as well.

Good luck with your writing!:-D

Tyrean Martinson said...

Love this post! I cleaned off my writing desk, and I've used it a total of four times since then. It is a nice little cubby, away from the business of the kitchen, living room, etc. but I'm used to writing in the kitchen, dining room, living room, car, dance studio lobbies, coffee shops, etc.

The ideal writing environment comes from being in the right place spiritually, mentally, and emotionally for me too.

It also helps if I don't have a head cold (today's excuse).

Terry W. Ervin II said...

A place with a computer (with a real keyboard and mouse) and a bit of room to spread out my notes.

Maybe some background noise. That's what I require.

Angie said...

Misha, thanks and good luck to you too!

Terry, that sounds nice and simple!

Carolyn V said...

I'm that way too. I can't seem to get on top of it when my emotions are all wound up. Or the house is a disaster, that makes it hard to write as well. ;)

Caryn Caldwell said...

Good luck! I hope you're able to set the stage for your writing and to get into a routine.

For me, the perfect writing environment is actually variety. If I stay in one place too many days in a row I get kind of burned out. Instead, I write in the family room, the bedroom, the library, the local coffee shop, and a few other places. I've even been known to drive to cool overlooks and write in my car, just for new scenery. Hmmm. Now that I write that, it kind of makes me want to do it again. Thanks for the inspiration!

Angie said...

Hi Caryn. Thanks for stopping by! I like to,write in lots of different places too. Good luck!

Stephanie Black said...

I usually write while on the living room couch, or chair. The couch probably isn't the greatest idea in the world because, you know, it's comfortable . . . great for napping . . .

Angie said...

I know, Stephanie. My writing chair is a beanbag. Great for napping too! You must be doing something right, though!

Peaches Ledwidge said...

I recently purchased a desk and I'm now more productive.

Melanie Goldmund said...

You have trouble writing when you're anxious, depressed, tired, and so on? Man, I thought I was the only one who suffered like that! What a relief to find I'm not alone. :-) I try to do what you do, too, going to bed and getting up at the right time, and above all, not overeating. Especially not sugar. Very difficult, but we all have to sacrifice for our art, don't we?

My ideal writing environment has a keyboard, such as my computer on my desk. And it's quiet enough that I can concentrate. I can occasionally write if there's a bit of noise in the room, but if there's a conversation or some music, I find myself stopping to listen. And I can't write by hand anymore, not for years now. It's too slow. I have to type. :-)

MTeacress said...

Before we moved, I had a nice writing space that I never wrote in. I find my comfort level has a lot less to do with what it looks like, and a lot more to do with my emotions. If I am calm and confident, I can write easily. If I am upset (like you said) it's harder - unless I'm writing something based on the theme of my upset. ;)

Angie said...

Great, Peaches! I need to get my desk cleaned off so it's actually usable.

Melanie, you are so not alone! And I need to be better at making those sacrifices.

Jackee said...

I'm the same way with sleep, spirituality, and exercise. But other than that, I love a writing space that has some element of nature in it. Also, it has to be very minimal and uncluttered. Thanks for sharing!