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Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Shed-loads of good places to write

The summer holidays bring the author-with-children particular challenges. Where to write in peace, being the first, closely followed by how to be a taxi as well as carrying on business of usual.

This year has been better: deadlines haven't  coincided with the holidays, although the day job has continued. Last year, desperate to make headway with my work-in-progress in peace and quiet, I retreated to the garden shed.

As you can see, the advantages of this shed are many. It benefits from natural ventilation, through a convenient hole at the back. We all know that the brain requires oxygen to carry out its tasks efficiently. There are useful tools at hand (you never know when you might want to take shears to a chapter or use a hedge-trimmer to tidy up a few scenes). The black bin acts as a desk and I bring a garden stool in to perch on, with the shelves convenient for my coffee mug. Best of all, the shed comes with companions: small furry creatures scamper around just out of sight, offering fellowship. Writing can be lonely.

As my novelist friend Deborah Swift spotted on a garden centre sign, there are indeed fifty sheds of grey. I am relieved I don't need to use ours this year. Not yet, anyway. Still a week of holidays to go.

PS, Deborah's latest novel, The Gilded Lily, will be out very soon. I can promise you that it will be everything you wouldn't get in Fifty Shades of Grey.