From the Archives: How to Choose Your Ideal Writing Space

Posted November 19, 2014 by Briana in writing routine / 6 Comments

How to Choose Your Ideal Writing Space -- Writer Briana Morgan wants to help you find the perfect place to work. |

Someone on Twitter recently asked me to write a post like this one, so I thought I’d re-purpose it. This post was originally published in September 2013.

Great writers are known not just for their prose, but for their writing spaces.

George Bernard Shaw had a rotating hut. Dylan Thomas did his best work cooped up inside a boat house. And J.K. Rowling, a more contemporary example, penned the Harry Potter series in an Edinburgh café.

While you may not have your own special shed or writing carrel, you no doubt have a space where you prefer to write. Here are three tips to help you choose your ideal writing space.

  • The first thing you need to consider when selecting your space is surface type. For example, you need to figure out whether you prefer writing at a desk, in bed, or in a hammock. If you’re not sure, try every surface you can think of. See which one works best for you. There’s no rule that says you have to get your work done at your desk.
  • Got a surface? Okay, good. Now you need to decide whether you’ll be writing inside or outside. In my experience, most people prefer the convenience of writing indoors. You have control of the temperature and won’t have to cancel a session on account of the weather. There are some people, however, who prefer working in the fresh air and natural daylight. You might very well be one of those people.
  • Finally, you should consider writing in public versus writing in private. As I said before, J.K. Rowling loved writing in public cafés. She loved soft chatter of café patrons and the ready availability of coffee and tea. I, on the other hand, cannot work when there are people talking. I get the most writing done when I hole up in my bedroom. Once again, you’ll have to see which works best for you.

Every writer has some sort of unique writing space. Some prefer writing at a desk, while others enjoy the comforts of bed. Writers can choose to do their work outside or indoors. Moreover, some authors like to pen their pieces in public, but there are those who would rather keep their insights hidden behind closed doors.

Whatever you prefer, just remember that your writing space is just that—yours. As long as you’re comfortable, that’s all that matters. Try some spaces on for size and find your most productive place.

What’s your favorite writing space?

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6 responses to “From the Archives: How to Choose Your Ideal Writing Space

  1. Actually, I write everywhere – I don’t have a specific writing space. It’s best to squeeze in as much writing time as possible, so why limit yourself to just one place? 😉

  2. Rae Oestreich

    Preferably, I write best in familiar territory: home, my apartment, work. If need be, though, I can write anywhere, as long as I’m in “the zone” (you know, where you’re just totally pumped to write some words). I’ve written on planes and airports, in a Hastings cafe…yeah, if I’ve got the time and the equipment, I’m there (I still prefer home/apartment, though; I can wear pajamas there).

  3. Rae Oestreich

    Exactly! Especially in the winter months, because you can make a blanket nest and hoard hot cocoa and nobody’s the wiser 😀