A couple of weeks ago I was trying to write while my family bustled around me, and I ended up jotting down the following words about how my writing works in a house as busy and noisy as this one ;
in the middle of chaos and noise and warmth and murmuring and wee wee on the potty and dogs barking to be let out and then in again, and kettle’s boiling as tea is made, as wine is poured, as pudding is grabbed, as music is played, as conversations rise and fall in the kitchen, and CD’s are changed, as days are yawned and trouble’s forgotten, as grievances are voiced, as ideas are expressed, as pictures are drawn and presented…
I wrote this on a typical Friday evening, when father-in-law is over for his dinner, and all the kids get to stay up late because it’s not a school night, and there is music on in the kitchen, and the TV is on in the lounge, and the little one is wandering to and fro and I am stupidly trying to write.
It made me smile and wonder how on earth I ever get anything done.
But things have changed! We just recently swapped everyone’s bedrooms around, which means the husband and I have gained a bigger room. My immediate thought was that I could set my writing table up in the bedroom and move the whole operation upstairs away from all the chaos. After all, I only really try to write in the evening once the littlest one is in bed. I dismissed the thought, thinking it selfish and worrying that I would feel too cut off from the family.
But my husband seemed to have other ideas, and during one of his days off last week, he went on a mad cleaning/sorting spree, which involved my writing table being moved up to our bedroom. Voila!
I now have what I need. Space to write. Silence. (Well not exactly, I can’t write in silence so YouTube will be on in the background and I can still hear the noise of the house, just reduced!) I’m still not sure if my husband was trying to be nice and supportive of my writing, or if he just got fed up of the mess my writing corner was creating in the lounge!
Anyway, it’s been a week now and I have to confess, I have been a hell of a lot more productive. I suppose I never realised how fragmented my time and thought processes were when in the middle of all that noise and movement. I would sometimes ask them to turn the TV down, or to be a bit quieter, but inevitably the TV would also distract me and put me off my writing anyway.
Now there are no excuses. Occasionally a child wanders in for a brief chat, and I don’t mind this, after all I don’t want them to feel abandoned! But on the whole I am left alone, which gives me roughly four hours of writing time, give or take, depending on when the little man is in bed.
It’s like when I was a kid! I used to hurry homefrom school to bury myself in my room, tapping away at my electronic word processor, creating worlds and inventing friends to share them with. I was always in my room, with the music on as I typed away. My mum used to worry about it, and say I should get out more and join in with the family but I was addicted, pure and simple. I had to write. And back then, I had the space and the time to write as much as I wished.
I think the only thing missing from my new writing space is a window view, but this can be easily arranged with a bit of a move around.
How about you? How do you write? On the go? At a desk? Do you need as much silence and peace as possible, or can you get surprising amounts of work done while surrounded with chaos? Feel free to comment below, and post pictures of your writing spaces!