Finding my happy place

To say that writing is an internal process is a gross understatement. For me, it’s like observing a different universe in my head and writing down what is going on. I see facial expressions. I hear background noise. I sense tension or love or anger or humor. Actions are moving in real time in my head.

I used to joke that writing was like channeling my schizophrenia, but that doesn’t do justice to the people who are clinically diagnosed with such a debilitating disease. Still, if I ever was unable to tell the difference between the real outside and the alternate universe inside, I might have a slight notion as to what they are going through.

It’s usually the real outside that becomes the problem for me. Trying to write what I see as I see it in a cohesive manner with the proper description requires an uninterrupted rhythm. Usually, I can tune most of the extraneous stimuli out. Not always.

The first three books were written at my husband’s  shop. I had taken several different desks there, but kept having to move for various reasons: too cold, too noisy, getting in the husband’s way, etc. Eventually, I was given a desk on a completely different floor in an attic of sorts with no windows and few lights. Actually that worked quite well…most of the time. It was, however, still open at the end by the stairwell, and then the husband would get on the phone.

I love my husband. He’s good at lots of things. One thing he is not good at is volume control. The scenario would go like this:

-Writing this important plot line. The sentences are running through my head almost faster than I can type them out.

-Phone rings. Husband’s friend calls. Husband’s “friend” phone voice is about 10 decibels louder than his “client” voice.

-Getting to a crucial sentence. Have perfect word poised to go from my brain to my fingers.

-Friend makes snarky comment. Husband loudly gaffas, comments back.

-Sudden distraction pulverizes word before it makes it to fingers. Word is lost. Feverish typing stops. Frustrated burst of rage must be squelched.

After all, it’s really not the husband’s fault. It’s his office.

This is why we were both thrilled when the new house was big enough for me to have my own office.

If you remember, the office was originally suppose to be downstairs. Because of WiFi connections and other silly things, the office ended up being in the other large bedroom upstairs, sharing space with my clothes. The walls are not butter yellow. They are eggplant (or some color trying to be eggplant, and ending up being “bruise”). It’s not my favorite, but I don’t hate it enough to repaint. I just compliment it with purple accessories (of which I actually have a lot of for someone who is neither obviously girly nor a Vikings fan).

I got two banquet tables from the husband’s office for an L-shaped desk, and two of those IKEA rolling cart thingies back from the rental property to file my stuff in. I got my huge electric school clock up on the wall and my pictures and doodads lined up around a tiny stereo and my laptop (soon to be replaced with a nice tower and honking monitor).

Remember that comforting feeling I got when I bought my first house? I get that feeling in my office, so it must be right.

FYI I’m on page 8 (technically page 16, book size) of going through the 5 edited copies of Book 3. I already have two author events scheduled in October, so the pressure’s on. Unlike all my other spinning plates however, it’s pressure I feel passionate about. It’s my happy place.

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