Monday, January 30, 2012

A Room With a View

by Julia Buckley

My writer friend recently made herself an office in her home. She chose one of the smallest rooms available, but the view out of its window allows one to see into the house where Ernest Hemingway grew up. From her creative space, she can see into his.

Sure, a writer can write anywhere. It shouldn't matter where she does it. Yet I found myself feeling envious of her writer's space--clean and white, with book-lined walls and creative little writery toys on the desk--and a view of Hemingway's house!

A writer needs a lot of things: talent, determination, a work ethic, and a willingness to spend time alone. But it never hurts to have an extra little something: classical music, maybe, or a burning candle, or--just maybe--the knowledge that you live next door to the home of one of the greatest American writers.

What else sparks a writer's creativity? In my case, it's playing Lexulous or Words with Friends (on Facebook). Something about that scrabble-like game really stimulates my brain.

I have another friend who says a little prayer to her muse before she begins writing.

How about you, writers of all sorts? What makes you feel creative?

(pictured: Hemingway's childhood home).


Sandra Parshall said...

A deadline works like a charm every time, Julia -- when one looms, I can become very creative. :-)

I love that house! I want it!

Sheila Connolly said...

Ah, yes, deadlines...oh, you meant this week?

I once worked with a guy (an investment banker) whose primary goal in life was to keep his desk completely bare. Which may explain why he never got much work done, apart from reading the paper. I hold that an empty desk is the sign of an empty mind, so of course my desk (and the floor around it, and every bookshelf in sight) is very full.

But I have been known to sketch out a chapter in my head while sitting at a dance (and it's in the book).

Julia Buckley said...

I know what you mean, Sandra--and usually that's the ONLY thing that gets me writing with regularity.

The house is Hemingway's childhood home! It is lovely.

Sheila--you show all the hallmarks of a truly creative mind. :)

Elizabeth Zelvin said...

I spent the weekend at the SCBWI conference in New York (children's book writers and illustrators), including a Friday intensive (morning and afternoon critique groups of 500 words, 8 writers, one editor from a major house (or agent, but I went for the editors)--and darned if I wasn't hopping out of bed all night long because my character was talking in my head for the first time in a while.

Paul said...

Iced tea. Copious amounts of it. Unsweetened, of course.

Julia Buckley said...

Liz, that sounds wonderful, and truly energizing!

Paul, you and my husband both. And it is a revitalizing drink. :)