Sunday, May 6, 2012

A Writing Home

No matter where we write, it's home. That is why when someone suggests that we carve a small space in which to create out of a communal space, it drives me crazy.

The reason Virginia Woolfe wrote essays on a "Room of One's Own" was to lament the fact that women often give or have even a corner they carve out wrenched away in the name of "community." As a community of writers, we are often told that we should settle for the least when we have the world around us to "own."

So, if you are tasked with making due with a corner of a kitchen table, the bathroom sink edge or a dark corner of a front porch, please understand that a bookstore or a coffee shop is a much better place to write. To me, libraries are just too quiet, with any conversation or movement too distracting.

At a university, the best place to write is in the cafeteria because no one tells a student to leave. The noise is also just enough not to harm your hearing, but still aids concentration and writing dialogue.

If home is where you prefer to write, then ensure that you claim the space you need rather than making do. Otherwise, you are telling yourself and the world at large that writing can be contained.

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