Somewhere there’s a room with bay windows; brilliant sunlight streams in through satin curtains. A glorious vista–trees and mountains and streams–lies just beyond it. There’s an ancient bookshelf filled with well-loved books; walls tastefully decorated with pictures and quotes; piles of books and magazines beside the typewriter on the polished oak desk. Perhaps there’s even a baby grand piano in the corner, or a flamenco guitar…
It’s the perfect place for writing.
At least–I used to think so.
Now I know that writing is the last thing I would do in a room like that.
I’ll stare out the window for hours on end. I’ll read those books and scan those magazines, searching for “inspiration.” And on and on…and the work, the actual writing, would never be done.
Perhaps the perfect place to write is a gray, empty, and colorless room without access to the Internet, without a window, without books. Not even a dictionary.
Maybe just a glass of water, some paper and pens, whatever device I’m typing words into, a desk and a chair, and myself.
Writing isn’t easy. As resistance–that thing in you that’s pulling you away from writing anything–builds up when we sit to write, everything else seems more enjoyable, more productive, and easier than putting words onto the page.
It might be wise to remove all distractions when it’s time to actually do the work. Use only what is absolutely necessary. Save recreation, daydreaming, reading, and external inspiration-hunting for another time.
And do the work.