Where I (Should) Write*

The Cave

The Cave

Those of you who read Writers’ Forum are probably familiar with Phil Barrington’s ‘Where I Write’ slot, which is always the last item in the magazine.

This month it’s the turn of actress-turned-author Carol Drinkwater ‘on her olive farm in the South of France’. Complete with swimming pool! BUT, I have to say, with some relief, that her desk is even messier than mine. In fact, there’s not an inch of space on it. (How?! What?!)

I don’t suppose I’ll ever make an appearance on those illustrious pages of Writers’ Forum – especially now that I’ve just ‘dissed’ Carol – but within the realms of Blogland, I can do what I like, so here it is:

Where I Write

‘The Cave’ is the annexe above our garage, which contains a bedroom, bathroom and ..ahem, ‘my office’. It’s separate from the rest of the house, accessed by a path across the (little) garden and up a flight of stone steps.

The Cave 001

When we first moved in, The Cave had its own kitchenette too because the previous owners intended to let it out to holiday-makers, but a decision was quickly made to rip that out (by Himself, who, I suspected, was concerned that my parents might come to stay and never leave!).

From the top of the steps there’s a lovely view across next door’s garden to the fields and rolling Cotswolds hills but, unlike the dog, who happily and unashamedly sits there for hours, gazing down at the neighbours (‘Hello, Bonnie!’ they call, in weary voices), I don’t like to appear to be ‘prying’ so I dash in and out and don’t linger on the top step (especially when I’m in my dressing gown, which has been known).

All my 'how to' writing books. I need 'em!

All my ‘how to’ writing books. I need ’em!

(Shhh… the neighbours, by the way, have got a hot tub! But it’s hidden behind the bushes. Very wise).

*It is actually something of a lie to say this is ‘Where I Write’ because I don’t spend enough time in The Cave, so I am hoping this piece might shame me into ‘upping sticks’ from the kitchen (which is toasty warm in the winter, courtesy of the Aga) and lock myself away, to write, write, write.

It even has tea-and-coffee-making-facilities, so there’s no excuse really, is there?

PS: In case you wondered, after my last post, we made it back safely from Spain at the weekend and ‘McPartner’.. which is a handy way of saying he’s Scottish and he’s my man.. was allowed back in to the still-united UK. Phew!

Here's the desk. And chair. Handy.

Here’s the desk. And chair. Handy.

And there is the printer, waiting to churn out a masterpiece..

And there is the printer, waiting to churn out a masterpiece..

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8 Responses to Where I (Should) Write*

  1. Wendy Clarke says:

    I’m always envious of other people’s writing spaces. I have a room upstairs with all my writing stuff in, but hardly ever use it because my own Bonnie isn’t allowed upstairs and I feel guilty because she sits at the bottom and looks sad.

  2. Ah, I know what you mean. They are good at those ‘sad looks’, aren’t they? Our Bonnie’s not allowed upstairs in the house but she is allowed into the annexe (I won’t tell you what she did up there as a puppy, before she realised she was ‘inside’! It was rather shocking – and on the mat too – but has never been repeated, I’m glad to say!). ANYWAY, I think other people’s writing spaces always look nicer than your own. It’s a bit like other people’s cakes always look better and taste better than yours, don’t they?!

  3. Tracy Fells says:

    What a lovely place to write, Helen. I like the idea of having to go outside and up the steps – having a place to write outside the house must get you in the right frame of mind whenever you set off.

  4. Linda says:

    I agree with Tracy, ‘going out’ to write must make it seem more like you’re doing a professional job. I use the spare bedroom as my office but even with the door firmly closed I can’t forget I’m at home and should probably be doing something else.

    • Linda
      Yes, that should be true!! But unfortunately the lure of the kitchen table (near the lovely warm Aga..!) is too much of a temptation. I really have to force myself to traipse over there. Pathetic, isn’t it?!

  5. bill says:

    Like the waste paper basket – handy! Look quite full!

  6. Actually, Bill the waste paper basket is on top of the book shelves (otherwise the dog pulls everything out, rips up the paper and generally makes mess!). What you can see is my bag of ‘writing stuff’ ! (should have moved it before I took the photo!)

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