I’m a creature of routine, but it’s fun to shuffle things up sometimes. I’m currently in the process of converting the spare room in my apartment into an office. The main goal is to have it be a room in which I want to write. I find that a writing space has to be Just Right for me to be able to do anything effectively.

Coincidentally, Victor J. Banis wrote a post at Jessewave earlier this week about shutting out the outside world to beat writers block. As I commented in the post, I actually do a fair amount of my writing in cafes. The reasons are two-fold: 1) I have a terrible time focusing on only one thing at a time and my mind is often all over the place, so I can concentrate on one task (writing, for example) if there is stuff going on around me that part of my brain can work to tune out; 2) I have found that my apartment is not that conducive to being productive. Until a couple of weeks ago, I didn’t have a designated writing space. I can write while lounging on my couch if I make myself, but I find my mind wanders. Generally, sitting at a desk (or a table in a cafe) in a real chair helps me concentrate on the task at hand. Also, cafes have coffee and pastries.

So, when I started thinking about how to make my “office” an effective space, I thought, well, I could try to re-create a cafe environment, only without all the people. So: coffee and pastries, check! I just bought a French press, and it serves this purpose pretty well. (I like my coffee strong enough to punch me in the face.) Moving the desk so that it faces the window gives me something to look at while I’m sitting at the desk, although, as you can see, I mostly only have a view of the big apartment building across the street.

I’m having a shut-in weekend. I have three days in which I don’t have plans and don’t have to go to the office, so I figured I’d have a few marathon writing sessions in my new office. It’s going pretty well so far. I mean, I’m still easily distracted—I took a break yesterday to read an entire novella; I keep finding music on my computer that I forgot I downloaded; oh, hey, is that Legally Blonde on TV?—but I’m getting a lot done. So it’s a good space.