Jan 31, 2011

Meet an Author Monday - My Work Space

Today on the bloghop we are doing our first themed post. It will be a monthly feature on the last Monday of each month. This month the theme is, My Work Space. A lot of the time I work wherever I happen to be, I spend a lot of time in Fermanagh and Cavan. Some of the scenes in Shades of Atlantis were written in the setting where they took place, for example, the coffeeshop scene in Dublin between John and Triona was written in a coffeeshop beside Trinity College and the Tara scenes were written at Tara in County Meath in late September when they took place.

Having said all that I do have a preferred working space and that is at the dinning-room table in Dublin. My actual desk upstairs is looking pathetically abandoned  at the moment.This is me right now.

1. My notebooks, I write everything in my notebooks first and consider it my first draft. It's normally quite rough and sometimes I even have problems reading them myself.

2. My pencil, sometimes I make changes in my notes that I'm not sure about so I write them in pencil. I can erase and move them somewhere else if necessary. There is a pen hiding there between my notebooks and copies of my first book. I generally like to write with a nice pen. The one I'm using at the moment is red metal and gold with a rubber grip.

3. Copies of Shades of Atlantis. My brother called in just before I took this picture to collect three signed copies for friends.

4. Another notebook, this is my most important one and comes everywhere with me. It's a small hardback and contains short notes on Shades of Atlantis and it's sequel, Ember and its sequel, some random short story notes, a script that I have been adapting since late 2009 and my miscellaneous notes. They are things that strike me in real life or dreams that I don't want to forget and so I write them down straight away. It's my memory vault for things like names and obscure facts that I often later incorporate into my writing. Only the most important notes go into this notebook.

5. I think this probably doesn't need much of a description. At the moment I'm working off Windows 7 and Office professional 2010. I email myself and use dropbox as back-up. My favorite item on Windows 7 is the on screen post-its, they come in mighty handy. Sadly, I had a massive crash before Christmas and lost my external drive and my laptop died. I gave  them a proper funeral, they served me well until their dying breath. We were together five happy years but I worked them hard.

6. Most important, we have fuel. My half eaten tuna melt. Bram's cafe is right across the street and there is far too much temptation to keep writing instead of cooking.

7. My Mocha is hiding at the edge of the screen.

On to the hop!

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  1. Wonderful pic! I never though of working in the dining room. I work sometimes in the kitchen.
    (sorry, open ID isn't working today on Blogger)

  2. Oops, I see I commented too early. Thanks for the tour of your writing space! It's cool that you still hand write everything out first. I used to do that when my laptop wasn't so easily accessible. Now I think of typing right in as a timesaver...but I sort of miss the hand writing. :/ Actually, I have a feeling I'll be stuck either in an airport or in a plane on a tarmac tomorrow night, so perhaps I'll get my big chance to do just that!

    When I'm reading Shades of Atlantis, it will add even more to the story to know many parts were written ON location.

  3. Yay, another dining room table writer! Seeing the tuna melt makes me hungry... :-)

  4. I so relate to you Carol (except the writing out of order thing - which I'm going to interview you for a post one day! HAHA)! While I don't write everything in my notebooks, I have to start there.

    And I write at my dining room table too!

  5. I'm not an author, but I love to stalk them. :D

    Well, I wish my copy of Shades was signed. Lucky brother's friends.

    Oh, and I love Dropbox.

    Great workspace. I don't know anyone who still takes hand written notes. LOL

  6. Looks like just the essentials. I'm like you with writing in a notebook, but I've ended up wtih several notebooks everywhere. And when I try to look for what I need I find my toddler has scribbled through them. Still, I had a poetry teacher in college say there was something magical about pen and paper and I think she was right.

  7. I am jealous of your tuna melt. *lips lips* I wish I could keep notes in a notebook, but, for the most part, I end up emailing them to myself or I'll lose everything.

  8. This set up looks a little roomier than your desk upstairs... I can see why you'd prefer it. :) By the way, speaking of your brother's lucky friends... He told me you sat and thought about you were going to write in mine for 15 minutes! You're awesome, Carol!

  9. I love how you numbered the items in your photo! It's almost like a crime scene. That's impressive that you write out the chapters first before typing them in. I imagine it allows the first draft to flow without editing as you write.