Creating space that lets the creativity bubble over, fill your soul and pour onto the page is super important. Now, I don’t mean running out and dropping thousands of dollars onto decor, remodelling and the newest laptop. It’s important that you craft your writing space and allow it to suit your creative needs.
First up - decide on a theme you want or style that speaks to you. For me, I kept it the same as the rest of my house - whites, blacks, greys and wood. I love neutral palettes and that allows me to flow creatively - while many people thrive in stuffy offices filled with books and piles of papers… I am definitely not one of those people, clutter and “stuff” gives me major anxiety. So, like I said it’s important to figure out what “speaks” to you.
Next, clear the clutter in your space. I don’t mean go all minimalist - while, I would never discourage that - most people don’t like to live that way. The clutter I’m referring too is any trash in your office, maybe some piles of books, or unfinished projects. Clear your desk off and start with a clean slate. Put on it only what is essential to your process and what inspires you.
Now, think about your routine or ideal routine, chop that in half and you should be somewhere around a routine that is achievable. I generally enjoy writing at 5am - I use the word “enjoy” loosely… the first 15 minutes are the absolute worst. I do love the creative energy I have first thing in the morning, so I sacrifice my comfort in the early hours and work on my passion. Figure out when you function best.
You have your ideal time set-up - now, what helps you function at your creative best?
What do you like to drink while you write?
Are you a snack person while you work?
Do you have a playlist set up for your current work in progress?
What about a signature scent when you work - a scent blend in an essential oil diffuser or a favourite candle?
Scents are incredibly powerful for the brain, so is any mechanism that primes the brain on how to act next - creating this style of routine makes it easier to flow from your day to day, and go into a mental work space. You can create these “priming” mechanisms through repetition, ie. making coffee, grabbing your favourite snack, having a playlist for your WIP, and a scent that distinguishes when it’s time to work - I recommend something energizing like peppermint, citrus scents, rosemary.... I do have separate candle scents depending on what book I'm working on, it automatically helps me shift into that novels "world". If I'm working on anything else in my life, I like to use an essential oil diffuser and switch between scents - Citrus, Spa, or Energizing.
Lastly, I would suggest creating a work space / writing space somewhere that you have access to daily - with little disruption - a spare room, coffee shop, etc. Go there for the first few weeks to write, or designate multiple spaces as your work space if you like to switch it up - just don’t allow other things to happen there until you develop a routine in the space to help your brain shift easier into that “work” mode.
The largest piece of advice I can give is put your phone elsewhere when you are writing - a separate room, in a laptop bag, in answer - just separate yourself so you don’t get distracted those small times that you stop can just corrupt your work flow - it takes a about 20 minutes to get in a space you can work efficiently and have a steady work flow - every time you check your phone, that breaks the flow state.
Here’s a few of my home work spaces.