This week’s Where Writers Write on The White Space features freelancer Lindsay Oberst’s writing space. Lindsay is a writer I met through Twitter, and I’m glad she’s sharing her space with us this week! If you’re interested in sharing yours, shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. And now, Lindsay!
Words are my everyday companions, so I’m glad Kristin started this dialogue about the physical places where words get written. It will be interesting to get a peek into the lives of other writers. I’m hoping Kristin will show hers too. (I will, Lindsay!)
Since you probably don’t know who I am, my name is Lindsay Oberst, and I’m a freelance writer, journalist and editor who also writes creatively. I work part-time at a center for sustainable journalism in its digital media department and freelance the rest of the time as a writer and editor, specifically related to creative, sustainable and cultural subjects. When I’m not writing to pay my bills, I often write poetry, short stories or portions of my novel-in-progress, which is about a lonely, college-aged artist with a unique power who realizes she isn’t entirely of this earth after she decides to attend her first music festival.
Above all, I love words and am currently reviving my website for writers called Word Zeal (http://wordzeal.com) which strives to be an online resource for word lovers who want to survive .
My answers to Kristin’s questions:
What is your writing space like?
I live in a small apartment in the middle of Atlanta, so I don’t have enough space to have an area only for writing. However, my love of writing spills itself throughout my rooms in the form of books, magazines and other bits of paper with words on them. When I look around at all the words, I am inspired to write my own.
I usually write in one of two places in my living room: on a small table covered in colorful Indian fabric next to my turquoise futon or standing up with my laptop on top of my bright blue bookshelf. I don’t have a desk or a bigger table. When I’m working from home (and not opting to work from a nearby coffee shop, which I often do), I usually stand up while I use my laptop. When I’m writing longer pieces, or writing creatively, I sit down and type instead. I also have plenty of paper and notebooks laying around for when I want to write by hand.
While I’m writing during the day, I like opening my blinds a few inches to let in enough light to warm the place without tempting me to go outside. But my favorite time to write is at night when I often can’t sleep because my head spins with endless ideas.
Do you keep a writing routine? If so, what is your routine?
One thing I’m working on this year is making better routines for myself, so my answer will be different soon. I believe that routines can make getting things accomplished much easier, and I want to be a more successful freelancer, write my novel and get more of my fiction published this year. I’m making plans so that I can get these things done. Right now, I work in an office three days a week and work from home the other two days of the week. I make myself write creatively for at least an hour each day. On the weekends, I try not to use the Internet at all, including social media, even though I’m an avid user on other days. Disconnecting from technology for a day or two is hugely helpful and gives me more time to write (if I do write on my computer, though, I use a Word document or another program without opening a web browser.)
What’s something unique and interesting about your writing space?
The fact that I write often while standing up is unlike most people. I enjoy standing because it gives me the freedom to move. I even stand whenever I’m at a bar, although I’m short so people often don’t notice. Sitting down all day is not good for our bodies and if I had the money for a standing desk—they cost at least $500 from what I’ve seen—I’d definitely get one. The idea of working while standing is weird to some people but I enjoy it and it makes me feel better than if I sit all day long. One of the coffee shops I frequent has high tables which also allow me to stand while working. I encourage people to try it out, even if they only stand for a few hours a day or one day per week.
If you could have any writing space in the world, what would it look like and why?
I love this questions, and I haven’t actually thought about this for a while, so this one will be fun to answer. I’d like a room of my own (as Virginia Woolf might say) entirely devoted to writing and books. I’d like to have bookshelves filled with books, soy candles and other colorful creative objects. Underneath a big window with a view of a mountain river, I’d like a ergonomic sitting/standing desk. On the walls, I’d post some of my favorite quotes and would have one entire wall that would allow me to write on it and erase as needed. I’d like to surround myself with words in an organized and colorful way. And I’d like to be able to also go sit nearby the river outside my window and write without the noise pollution of a city when I wanted to.
Thanks again to Kristin for letting me talk about my writing space on her blog. I wonder if any other writers write while standing up?
Lindsay Oberst is a freelance writer/editor, journalist and creative writer who specializes in art, culture, design, digital media, sustainability and social good. Join me on Twitter @LindsayOWrite (or @LindsayOAtlanta). I’m also friends with a good number of writers on Google Plus, although I don’t use it often.
Thank you for sharing your writing space with us, Lindsay!
What do you guys think? Share your thoughts and your dream writing space in the comments!