Tag Archives: office

How to Resume Writing After a Hiatus

One of these days, I’m going to get back to writing. As I’ve mentioned before, I don’t have any privacy to be able to do any serious writing at the moment. But, I will. To prepare, I need to do a few things.

Have a place

When the room in the basement is ready for me to put my computer on the desk and a chair to sit on, I’ll be there! Once it’s all ready, I can start writing.

Re-read what I’ve written

I need to get myself back into my world. I have to completely reacquaint myself with the story. Actually, I don’t need to do that, since I know it by heart. However, by reading, I get my mind back into it, and I can rediscover the feeling.

Prepare my maps

I have a lot of maps. By going over the maps, I can explore my world again and live there in my mind. There’s still a lot to develop.

Notes, notes, notes

I need to review my notes and write more notes. I need to write notes on all the characters, all the places, all the story lines, everything.

Update my author website

I need to add some content to my author website. In particular, I want to get the Ariadne Encyclopedia started. It’ll be my online reference guide for the world. I plan to have character profiles, country profiles, and star system information available.

Write and edit

I actually have several parts written but not up on the website yet. However, I need to get them critiqued and edit them. I also need to write my novel, not just Journey to Ariadne.

Keep everyone updated

I want to keep my readers updated in several ways. One is, through this blog. Another is on YouTube. Another is through my Facebook page. And the other big one is Twitter. Eventually, once I have a Goodreads author page, I’ll be updating that, too.

There’s a lot to do, but I’ll get it done. If you write, what do you do to prepare? Let me know in the comments below.

Authors Answer: The Movie Part 1

Authors Answer has come to the big screen! Okay, not really. It’s come to YouTube. Every week, I’m going to make a video answering the original Authors Answer questions! It’s been quite some time since they’ve been answered, so some answers will be different. I’ll also be able to show you some things with video. So, watch my first answer!

And if you want to see my original answer, go here. If you want to make a video answering the same question, you’re very welcome to do so.

If you have any comments, please leave them below!

Week in Review – June 5, 2016

Another week has come and gone, and a lot happened in the last week. Some good and some really not at all good. But I’ve also started focusing on something and have already seen some positive results. Let’s find out what happened.


Nothing at all. I caught a cold and felt so tired most nights that I didn’t feel I could read. I’m at 41% on Redemption Ark by Alastair Reynolds. I need to get working on this!


Big setback here. We had a sump pump failure in the basement with a bit of flooding. It’s been repaired, but the office will be closed until the flooring is replaced in one corner.


Not unexpected, but I’m still at 0 patrons and $0. I don’t expect much until I’m producing more videos and gaining more subscribers there. Also, once I start writing and getting the new material out, I should start getting some.


I worked on some more Esperanto. I should get back into French, too. That’s my primary focus.


We went swimming at the rec centre, and my daughter loved it. We’ll definitely go again this week.


I have three new videos out this week, but one is only available on my Patreon page. But go check out the public videos on my channel. But the biggest news with the channel is that I’ve started making improvements to the channel, as well as coming changes to the videos themselves. I’ll be using cards and annotations far more often to direct viewers to different things while watching. And video production is going to pick up, especially with Japan-related videos. But I’ll also be Booktubing!

The Blog

I talked a lot about social media again. But you’ve already seen that with the Video section above.


Started a course on the British Empire on FutureLearn, except that I haven’t even looked at it. I guess I should tonight.

The Next Week’s Goals

I’m going to do a lot of work on my YouTube channel this week. I can’t do much about writing until the office is put back together. So, I’ll focus on my other creative outlet, other than this blog. Thinking about collaborations for YouTube, actually. Got something in mind, but I need to talk to the people I’d like to collaborate with. Keeping it bookish, actually.

How was your week? Let me know in the comments below.

Office Update, Beards, and Fantasy

Video update here! In fact, I have two videos for you. First of all, an update to the office. It’s ready for me to use and I should be using it tomorrow. Take a look.

Second, the theme of beards continues, and I talk a bit about beards, fantasy, and authors with beards.

Mine is getting shaved off tomorrow. What do you think? Who has the better beard, Patrick Rothfuss or George R. R. Martin? Discuss in the comments below.

A Tour of My Office

Today, I made a video about my office. It’s nothing to look at yet, but there’s potential. Watch the video and find out about my plans.

This video would have actually been a Patreon only video, but as I have no patrons, there’s no point in keeping it secret. But this is a preview of the kinds of videos I’ll be doing for my patrons.

If you have any suggestions for how I can arrange things, let me know in the comments below.

Welcome to My Writing Studio/Office

This is my project:

Doesn’t look like much yet, but I’m going to have it set up so I can write, do videos, and work in a quiet place. There are a lot of boxes and things in there, and space needs to be made for me to set up my computer, but I’ll work on it over time.

First of all, I just want some space to put my computer and sit down. We need a rug to protect the floor from a chair. That’s all I need in the beginning.

After that, I’ll want to arrange the room and hide the boxes, so a partition or sheets hanging from the ceiling would work.

What I’m going to do is give you updates on the Office Project periodically when I’ve done something. I’ll be getting something done soon, so I should have an update within the next week.

What would you do with the room? Let me know in the comments.

Authors Answer 1 – Writing Studio

Welcome to the first Authors Answer.  In this feature, ten authors plus myself will answer a question every Friday.  This is an opportunity for you to see how authors think, and how they often have very different answers.  You can click on their names to see their profiles and links to their blogs, websites, and social media. Enjoy!


Question 1: If you could design your dream writing studio/office, what would it be like?

Tracey Lynn Tobin

Oh man, if I could somehow have exactly everything that I wanted? Well first of all it would involve building a piece onto my house because no room in our house is big enough for what I want. I’d want to start off with a high-ceiling room, maybe ten feet or so would be good, and the room itself would have to be at least 15 x 15 ft. I would have a wide window that went right to the ceiling, and it would be the type of window with a little bench/resting area as the sill. This area would be full of pillows and perfect for curling up to read a book or jot down some notes while getting my daily dose of sunlight. But the window would also have to have thick, light-blocking curtains because sometimes it is very important for me to write by as little light as possible.

My desk would not be the standard giant wooden monster that a lot of writers love (though they are pretty cool); I want the kind that they get for offices in the oil patch. These desks are your standard faux-marble computer desk, but the height is adjustable, so I could lower it right down to my short stature, or I could raise it up super-high and write standing up if the mood struck me. The desk would house my laptop, with an extra screen attached, a mini-pinboard for notes and reminders, and a bunch of candles (see aforementioned “write by as little light as possible”).

Finally, the rest of the room would be filled with bookshelves, like my own personal library, and some of those shelves would be reserved not for books, but for my collectibles, my Funko Pops, and anything else that I love enough to want near me while I work.

That would be my dream office.

H. Anthe Davis

I think what I’d want most would be huge maps on my walls.  My current setup is okay — I don’t really need more than a computer and a chair — but I’m working with a large and detailed story-world, and the little maps I have on my computer don’t really provide me with the sense of scale I’d honestly like.  If I had one wall just covered in a continent map, I imagine I’d spend a lot of time detailing the little places and routes and points-of-interest that are just tiny pixels on my current maps.  As I was initially inspired by detailed D&D game-worlds, I would really like to have that level of information in mine.  Right now I just don’t have the space.

Caren Rich

First off, it would be detached from the house to limit intrusions by children.  Like a child’s playhouse, but for me.  It would be one room.  One wall would have a large picture window.  Another would have a wall of bookshelves full of writing related and reference books.  There would be a small area with a sink, coffee pot, hot tea bags, and a small refrigerator.  And of course a small bathroom.  Basically, everything for basic needs will be there.  If it’s in the room I won’t be tempted to leave and more writing will get done.

Now, the color scheme.  Why?  Because color matters.  I think a nice sky blue.  I like that color and it reminds me of the beach.  I hear blue also increases productivity.  I would have a large desk with plenty of room to spread out my materials, and a laptop.  I would need a comfy work chair and a really comfy reading chair.  I use quite a few maps when writing, so I would need a table to spread those out.  A cork board to pin inspiration would be very useful.  And let’s not forget a magic cabinet that refills itself with whatever supplies I need at the moment.  Ink cartridges, paper, chocolate, you know the essentials.

In the end it would be a room dedicated to nothing but writing.  That way when I go to that room I would be prewired to write.  I think that’s part of routine.  Writing often, in the same place makes it easier to write.

D. T. Nova

I don’t pay much attention to my surroundings when I get really involved in my writing, so the most helpful thing that I don’t already have would probably be soundproofing. All I really need is an appropriate chair, space for anything I might be using as reference, and a lack of anything really distracting. And my computer, duh.

Amy Morris-Jones

You know that house with the cupola room built on top? That cupola that juts out of the roof like the crow’s nest of a ship and has windows on all four sides? Yeah, I’m sure you know the one I’m talking about. You know it faces something incredibly scenic, and you see that little cupola room up there as you drive by and think, “Wow, what a view that room must have!”

If you give that cupola room a little more thought just before it passes out of view, you might wonder how the person who owns the house gets up there—is it a narrow, winding staircase with a wrought-iron railing? Probably. At the top of the steps, though, anyone who enters has to stop to admire the view, the expanse of Lake Superior spread out before the north window and the patchwork greens of Hiawatha National Forest visible through the other windows.

The room is well lit—even through the dreary dim of a Michigan winter. You might even call it cozy if you were to get an opportunity to push the plush pillows out of the way and recline on the window seat below the south window. If you managed to avoid the pull of sleep in that relaxing spot, you might want to peruse the bookshelves that run under the windows, an eclectic mix of books that any bibliophile would be proud to call her own.

I know it’s hard to do, but if you can tear yourself away from that book you just found, you might notice that there’s a desk under the north window. Well, calling it a desk might be too formal. It’s more like an oversized table, piled with loose papers, a notebook, several pens, and an assortment of books, each with a bookmark hanging out. A computer sits there, the screen filled with words, a novel in progress. You might want to take a peek—just a quick glance to see what the words say—but you won’t. You know that an artist is at work in that cupola room overlooking Lake Superior, and you wouldn’t want to ruin the surprise.

S. R. Carrillo

I need sunlight and a wide open space, a desk near a huge window, a comfy chair. A TV behind me, in case I need to Netflix or game some frustration out during the writing process. A good AC system because sunlight = heat. And a shelving system of some sort to catalogue my books and writing notebooks/folders/manuscripts, etc. Pretty much, exactly what I have now. 😀

Linda G. Hill

My dream writing studio would be in a tree house. Not just your average tree house of course – it would have a trap door in the floor to get in, large bay windows that open to let in the breeze and close if it’s raining. It would have gas lights for when the sun is beginning to go down and a wall lined with bookshelves. Far away from traffic and close to the water so that I have gorgeous scenery to look out to, the only sound to penetrate my world would be the birds, squirrels, and cicadas in the summer. And of course the swish of my horse’s tail; he’ll be tied to the hitching post outside.

Jean Davis

What a timely question. I’m in the middle of building a house right now, which includes my dream writing office.

It is a room without doors at the foot of the stairs in the basement which allows me my own space while still being within earshot if someone needs me (and they always seem to when I’m writing). This way, I don’t feel guilty about shutting myself away or being distracted by wondering what chaos is being created in the rest of the house. The room is also far from the bedrooms so late night or early morning writing binges won’t bother anyone.

My writing room includes a desk with a good office chair. Though honestly, I get most of my writing done with my feet up, so it also includes a comfy reclining chair. There is a large whiteboard on the wall for plotting and shelves to store all my writing books, notes and display the magazines my short stories have appeared in. A few writing-related posters will adorn the walls.

While there is access to a window if I turn around, I’m more productive in a writing cave. Not directly seeing if it’s light or dark helps me stay lost in the story. I also don’t have the urge to stare out the window and think about the yardwork I should be doing. Knowing what distracts me, I’ve designed this room to avoid as many of those things as I can.

All I really need to write is a place to sit and my laptop, but I do keep candles and my Scorpius bobblehead on my desk. I like the lights dim when I write and Scorpius nods as I type. Or that might be him nodding because my leg is bouncing up and down while I’m in the middle of writing a tense scene. Either way, his approval amuses me.

Elizabeth Rhodes

My ideal writing conditions are fickle.  Noise can distract me, but quiet causes my mind to wander too much.  Sometimes I need fresh air, sometimes a beautiful sunny day makes me wish I were anywhere but inside.  For this reason my idea studio would have to be flexible.  There would be windows, but with blackout curtains.  I’d have multiple chairs and cushions in case I want to be comfortable or focused at my desk.  My most productive writing sessions are spent with a notebook and pen, so I’d need plenty of those, but a computer will be needed eventually.  It’s not uncommon for me to have my laptop closed next to me, playing music while I’m scribbling in a notebook.  But having access to a coffee pot is one thing that will be constant.

Paul B. Spence

I don’t need anything fancy.  My perfect writing office would be comfortable, have room for my cats to sit near me without standing in front of the computer monitor (lookin’ at you, Doodlecat), and my books within easy reach.  So… yeah, what I’ve got, basically.

Jay Dee Archer

In the dream house I want to build, I have a dream writing studio.  But in whatever house I live in, I’d like a room like this.  It has a door that I can close for privacy and silence.  There’s a window on one wall, to let in natural light.  Hopefully, there’ll be a view filled with trees.  Near the window, but not in front of it, is a desk.  On that desk, there’s a desktop PC and a laptop.  I’d be using the desktop for much of my work at home, as well as any kind of image processing, video processing, and games.  The laptop will be my writing studio on the go.  And I’d have to say that the desk will be wood with plenty of drawers.  Along two walls will be bookshelves to keep my library of books.  Those shelves will be made of wood, as well, probably mahogany.  The reddish colour just seems right.  The walls will also be a dark red colour.  It seems warm and also goes with the general feeling of the room.  Along the third wall will be a sofa and maps.  Not just of the world, but also maps for my books.  Around the room, I’d like to keep various things, such as solar system models, plastic models (I want to get back into doing this), and maybe even a TV.  And that is what I have in mind for my studio.

How about you?

Now I’d like your opinion.  What kind of writing studio or office would you like to have?  What do you think about these ideas?  Is there one you like the most?  Leave a comment with your thoughts.

Come back next Friday for the second question!

My dream writing studio

For a long time, I’ve wanted my own room dedicated to books and writing.  Call it a writing studio, a library, an office, whatever you like to call it.  Some guys have a man cave.  I want my writing cave.

Well, it’s not a cave, it’s a standard room, has a door and a window, as well as 4 walls, a carpeted floor, and a ceiling.  I’m not much of a decorator, but I have my wishes for how I want it to look.  And maybe my dream writing studio is pretty standard looking.

I’d like two of the walls to be lined by big bookshelves.  They should be nearly to the ceiling, with some space at the top for various things I may collect.  I’d like them to be a rich reddish colour, maybe mahogany, cherry, or walnut.  They will hold my library, all of the books that I own.  I’ll arrange them by genre and author, allowing me to easily locate a book.

The walls will be painted a darker colour.  Bright colours are nice.  I like bright colours, but I want my cave to have a warm feeling, and a rich, dark colour would be ideal.  Like a red wine colour.  That would warm me up.

Furniture would be pretty standard.  A desk for my computer, of course.  I’d likely have a couple of laptops, a bigger desktop replacement, as well as a smaller netbook sized PC for writing away from home.  While the above description sounds traditional, I want a modern desk with a sleek design.  I wouldn’t just be using the computer for writing, but I do like other things, such as games, Youtube, Internet, and I can’t forget blogging.

I have a love for maps, so one of my walls will have several maps.  They’ll include a world map, a map of Canada, and a map of Japan.  Additional maps may include those of the worlds I’m creating in my writing.

I’d also like a nice, comfortable sofa to lounge on while I read.  Not a leather or vinyl sofa, but a simple cloth sofa that I won’t stick to on a hot summer day or leap in the air from shock on a cold winter day.

Some other various items may include astronomy related pictures or globes, plastic models of planes or ships (I’m interested in making these), and family photos.

What’s your idea of your own personal dream room?