Private Places to Write Your Novel
Where do I write? I get asked this question a lot.
Where do you write? I get asked this question a lot. It used to puzzle the heck out of me since it was something I never gave much thought to when I wrote my first few novels. I lived alone and had an office in my house. I simply sat down at my desk and wrote. What was the big deal about finding a place to write? I wondered.
Fast forward a few books and several years. I was married with young kids. Suddenly the question — Where do you write? — didn’t seem so trivial. Finding a place to write in private with no interruptions for even a few hours at a time could be a real challenge. I knew I had to make some changes.
I am now far more proactive — often even uncompromising — about protecting and preserving my time and space to write. I go in my office, shut the door, and hang a hot pink DO NOT DISTURB sign. When the children were younger I would tell them to knock only if their lives were in danger.
Privacy is everything when you’re writing regardless of where you are in your career. In his book On Writing, Stephen King says that he wrote his first novels on the porch of a rented house and in the laundry room of a trailer where he and his wife lived.
Some established authors rent office space outside their homes. They say it’s the only way to ensure solitude for any real length of time. It also forces them to be more disciplined about their writing schedules if they have to get up and go to an office. Some writers go as far as to get hotel rooms to get away from it all. I once rented an apartment across town for six months.
There are no rules here, no magic formulas. Get creative. Do whatever you have to in order to get the job done. And don’t feel guilty about it.