Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Where do you write?

When we moved in our home a year ago, I fought with the movers. They told me my desk was not intended to be on the second floor. They argued it could not be moved upstairs. They did not want to do it.

I argued, because I needed the first floor bedroom for guests and parents, who can't easily navigate stairs. I needed the office/spare bedroom to be near my then six-month-old son's room. This way, I didn't have to use monitors as I would be steps away — not a staircase away.

I won the argument with the movers, but somehow my engagement ring went missing that day. Oh, I digress.

Today, my son is 10 months older. He's walking, exploring, grabbing and growing. He's a lot of fun, but the office arrangement is getting cramped and disheveled.

I essentially share the office with him. All my office supplies and desk materials are either stacked around or piled into one desk drawer or piled on the bed. Yesterday, I tried to sneak in a few words while he was awake. I turned around to find him wiggling under the daybed. He was in search of a box of office supplies that I had hidden away from him weeks ago. He has lots of toys in the office, but he's always looking for something new.

With each new growth spurt, I'm reorganizing a little bit. This week, I have had a cold. I've felt worn down and unproductive. He's discovered how to get into my last desk drawer.

During today's nap, I'm dropping my writing plans and figuring out a new organization plan for the bare essentials. I need less clutter around the computer to think and to write.

It's a balancing act to share the office with my son. There's never a dull moment, which doesn't always help my focus, but it adds to the fun factor in my life.

Where do you write? How do you balance writing with your children or other family situations?


  1. I don't blame you for making that a priority. Hope you feel better soon. Don't ask me how I juggle it, I'm just grateful I have one of mine at school now (though I miss him dearly :)

  2. I didn't do much writing when my four were small. They share my office as teens, though, when they use the other computer (which is often!). It's a little distracting, but I get more done when they're around. When I have to fight for my writing time, I think I make use of it more. The days when I'm home by myself are my least productive. Go figure!


  3. Oh goodness. Right now I'm struggling to carve out my writing time. Again. The best purchases I've made for writing: my laptop and ear plugs. I couldn't survive without them. :)

  4. My kids are grown men now. When they were small I only wrote in my journal and then only when I couldn't sleep because I had to write. Now my most productive time is early early in the morning before my husband wakes up and before the dog and cats need constant attention or I can put them back to bed after an initial bit of food and love. That seems when I'm most creative.

  5. @Catherine- Thanks. I guess a lot of times we "just do it." The organization is almost finished.
    @Debbie- I don't know how you did anything with four! I'm less productive by myself, unless it's at night and I know my boys are tucked into bed.
    @VV- earplugs! I've had several mention noise canceling headphones too.
    @Clar- I'm most productive in the morning, if I wake up before my son. Then, the fun and chaos begin.

  6. My wife has an absolutely huge desk and we put it upstairs. The movers never said a word about it and as I recall there were only 2 of them. She hates her desk and wants to get rid of it. If she does I don't know who's going to move it because she and I certainly are not.

    Tossing It Out

  7. Lee - Good luck moving it. Nice that your movers were helpful.

  8. It's a constant balancing act and I found I just had to ebb and flow with it (yes, I realize I'm mixing metaphors :)) I do a lot of writing in my head before actually writing it down. I try to keep a notebook and pen around, but usually end up with pocketfuls of old ATM receipts and pieces of napkin with ideas and sentences scribbled all over them. I'm lucky - my office has a closet. Supplies in, door latched above their reach :) It's not so much WHERE you write as THAT you write :)

  9. Very true Susanna. I use the closet too. It seems with each new growth spurt, I need to adjust. I guess that keeps me flexible and on my toes.

  10. I write at the local coffee shop before work in the morning. I do very little writing at home.

    Early in the morning is my best creative time.

  11. Ron, a coffee shop before work sounds like a great place. A fresh start to the writing/work day. Thanks for stopping by.

  12. Love Susanna's response!

    We have an "official" office in the basement, but it's gloomy and lonely. So instead I put my desk in the family room with a great view and the whole house bustling around me. Yes, it's hard to work when the kids are home, but it's better than feeling banished. Luckily, now that they're in school, I do get uninterrupted hours in the house by myself!

  13. Julie, I sometimes abandon the computer for a notebook just to sit with Hubby and dogs after my son is in bed. The family room sounds like the right place to be. No one wants to be banished.


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