Thursday, February 28, 2013

Writing from Conception to Completion Using a Desk ~ Really?

My old desk
After using the same desk and office configuration for more than ten years, recently I decided it no longer fit my writing needs. I needed more working table space and less vertical storage for things to get lost in.

But what would I want? I went on a quest to find the perfect desk and matching storage space. Know what? I didn't find anything.

I liked this desk at Pottery Barn, but it didn't come with a matching storage unit. But now, armed with a concept or idea, I had something to work with. A lot like writing, don't you think? Once you have an idea, you can start working on it, right?

Hubby and my dad
I had a particular storage unit in mind, one that would accommodate at least six cubbies to hold files and folders with the potential for a couple smaller shelves. Hubby designed the storage cubby and found plans for a similar desk to the one I liked. The planning or design phase, similar to "plotting." 

The actual creating of the desk took coordination and help from my whole family. Legs and shelves had to be level, measurements precise, and, of course, the appropriate balance between looking nice and being practical. We bought and tested about five different stains until we achieved the right look. 
My new desk

Here it is. My new desk and storage unit. I'm still looking for a couple little baskets and a wall board, so until then, my office is still in the tweaking stage. 

From conception to completion. 
Writing a book requires the same skeletal components:
  • Concept or Idea
  • Plan (plot or premise)
  • Create (write)
  • Tweak (edit)
In my current wip, I just wrapped up the creating phase and cranked up the edit process
Where are you in your writing phase?
Have you made any changes to your work space to accommodate your writing needs?

Journey's Embrace
~ Releases tomorrow, 3/1, with Pelican Book Group

After an injury forces Deputy U.S. Marshal Sage Michaelson off duty, he heads to his hometown with two things on his mind: recuperating and reevaluating, but Sage can’t refuse his best friend’s plea to keep a protective eye on his little sister after someone ransacks her house. But Delaney’s not so little anymore—and definitely not the young “Dane” Sage remembers. 

Flight Medic Delaney Hunt has loved Sage forever. But, he’s all about control and order while she embraces life and takes risks. As much as the idea appeals to her, she doesn’t need Sage looking over her shoulder. But when things go wrong and she finds herself hanging by her fingertips, who does she call to rescue her?

Will Delaney ever be the woman Sage wants by his side? Can Sage learn to live by grace, recognizing that God is in control? Can they overcome their fears to embrace life together?


  1. I'm in the editing phase also, Dora. As for my's in the "shove it in the drawer and forget about it" phase. We bought it about twenty years ago from an unfinished furniture store expecting to take it home and stain it. Well, we had good intentions, anyway.

    1. It's easy to do that, Sandy. A new desk has been on my "must do" list for at least seven years, since we moved into our house. But finding something that worked for me wasn't so easy or quick. So what do you use for a work space?

      Do you find editing to be a totally different monster than creating? Requires a shift in gears...

    2. I use the stain-less desk. Over the years it's developed its own patina. :-)

      I'm an "edit as you go" person, and it's definitely different. On the creation side, it's a matter of pulling the words out of thin air (even for those who plot first). On the editing side, we have something in front of us to work with, and it's a matter of making sure that idea, scene, word is the best possible fit. Maybe a little like placing that new desk in your office? Where will it fit? Is the light good? Do I want to see out the window or have my back to it?

  2. Love your new writing area! Y'all did a great job building the desk and shelving unit. Looks very practical and stylish, too. :) I don't have a new desk, but I do have a new writing chair! Yippee! :)

    I'm still in the creating phase, shooting for a St. Patrick's Day deadline (self-imposed). I think I'll make it, but I'll have a huge tweaking phase!

    1. Every writer needs a new chair occasionally. Helps with posture and reduces writer's fatigue. :-)

      St. Patrick's Day? That's awesome, Angie!! I'm so happy for you! Sending you hugs and high-fives!!

  3. Hi Dora, this was fun to read because I'm in the process of overhauling my hap-hazard "writing cave" into something efficient and more attractive and also a sitting room. I'm now trying to decide if the smallish secretary left by my father in law will do for my laptop. I no longer use a big desktop PC and my son says he'll take that big old oak computer desk...but I really want the "height" right, you know?

    And I am so ready to go as paperless as I can. This is all a major challenge as I am quite ADD and get distracted so easily. xox

    Your room is a good inspiration and very lovely.

    1. Writing Cave? lol. Love that! That's exactly how I felt before we started this project. I had transitioned from desktop to laptop, too, and the desk was too tall and clunky, dwarfing my little room.

      I don't know about going "paperless." Still not there yet. Thanks, Tanya! Hope your redesign is all you imagine and want in your new space. Hugs!


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