Celia over on her lovely blog has this very sweet idea. She suggests that we post shots of our favourite things in our kitchens. I am going to do this again next month after I have had the autumn tidy up. But today I thought I would send a tiny challenge out to you all to show us one or two favourite things in your writing spaces. Maybe your writing space is the kitchen, or a corner, or in the sun on the verandah, the couch. Where do you sit when you write that blog we love to read?
Here are my writing spaces.
The Summer Study. This is a small shady cool room with only one little window. You will remember that I do not have air conditioning and the summer study is cool and dark. I can only show you a few corners as I have abandoned my summer space now that winter is coming.
Now I know you guys! You are all readers and you are all craning to see what books are in there – so let me tell you another terrible secret. I have only been living with John for a little over four years and now the house has books stacked in corners, falling off shelves, tripping over each other beside the bed, jammed into unlikely spaces like commuters in a cheap jet. And yes I DO often buy a book because I like its cover and it is on the sale table. I read them all. But I have a special bookshelf for the good books. The Twicers. The ones I will and do read more than once. So this dusty bookshelf is a mere glimpse.
And yes I deliberately took that shot in low light so it would be blurry!! I always look especially good when blurry. OK. You have had your laugh. Now let us go up the ladder to the Loft.
Here is a corner of my Winter Studio in the Loft. It is big, light and airy. And yes that phone is in working order. We don’t have electric phones. Too many lightening strikes. Weirder and weirder.
When I came back from Europe to live out here on the Plains, the first change that I made to the house was to add the big verandah where we eat all summer. This changed the entrances and exits and turned the kitchen around. After we had finished the kitchen ( mostly), I asked a very nice builder man to take out the ceiling in the big room and turn the attic into a loft. I had to draw pictures because he just looked at me as though I had offered him his own red work truck in a soup. Evidently this was one of those things that triggers the ‘You can’t do that!’ response.
One of the spaces this created was my Winter Studio. With three big skylights and huge windows to the North and the South this is a perfect warm, light, writing space for the winter. We used recycled timber for the floors and it is finished with copper from the gutters of an old roof and all the trim and shelves are either old barn timber or lovely maple that Johns brother milled. These book shelves are on wheels so when it all gets terrible I can pull the entire box of shelves out from the wall and go hide in behind them. Or use them as high benches.
We do not have central heating either so the house is heated with a big cast iron fire. We gather fallen trees all summer and heat ourselves with them all winter. We don’t cut down trees. You know those ambulance chasers? Well, we are tornado chasers. We take two trucks and the chainsaws and offer to help people clean up their fallen trees! We once had a guy drive up in his golf cart over to where we were working and call out ‘If you can find my cherry tree you can have it, I don’t know where that dang thing got blowed to.’ Later he came back and said he had found his tree behind the tavern.! Off we toddled.
Also in Johns work there is a lot of construction timber wasted, if it is chemical free he brings that home and into the fire it goes. So the fire makes lots of heat, and the heat rises straight into my Loft.
How do I get up into my loft, I hear you ask. Well I took the old attic ladder which is on an intensely gorgeous old pulley system and I had my guy fit it into the ceiling of an empty wardrobe. So it is hidden. I climb up the ladder to get up here. Which I need to tell you is quite a feat with a bowl of salad and a cup of coffee.I am on the look out for a real fire pole, which I will find, as they are closing fire stations as well as Post Offices. No, not for pole dancing! So I can slide down if I am in a hurry. Pick your mind up out of the gutter!!
Now imagine that you are sitting at my desk. Look to your left. You will be looking across a completely open space, you can look down into the lounge and the dining room (you won’t though because I would have to tidy up and I haven’t) and across the great divide to Esmeralda. She is a very old dressmakers dummy that I found when I was shopping in my MotherInLaw’s attic. (The attic and her barn are my favourite places to shop!) On the right you will see two of the three skylights I had the little man put in before he took the floor out. These light the big room below. Light and Space are important to me.
Now, if you feel like it and no pressure you understand. But. Do you have a shot of your space? Add a wee link to mine if you do, so that I can zoom over. Where do you write?