FRIDAY FORAGE – 2013/09/20



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When a coffee shop isn’t quiet enough and no corner in your home is considered a sanctuary, you can find your creative safe haven through other means.

Here are five ways to get your write on!


1) If It Ain’t Broke…



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I know it’s not a space, per se, but I had to show off the simplicity of the desk upon which vast worlds, new civilizations, and languages were created by the great J. R. R. Tolkien.

Sometimes, all you need is a simple desk to get started.


2) What If You Don’t Have Room?

If you’re a writer, you might have hermit-like tendencies. If that’s the case, you have no need for an extensive wardrobe. Just turn your closet space into a mini office.




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Of course, don’t be put off by the feminine design. I aim to please all writers. Also, it’s great if you have more closet space to work with.



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3) If You Don’t Have Room, Make Room–or A Shed

Another famous author, Roald Dahl, had a writing hut called The Gipsy House. He locked himself away to write about places beyond the stretches of a child’s imaginings.




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Who needs a desk when you can make your own writing board with the green baize of a snooker table? According to his museum info, that’s just what Roald Dahl did. He had other writing rituals he performed in this shed. And you can learn about them here.




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4) No Room? No Backyard? No Problem.

Did you know you can rent out writing spaces? I’m not talking about a writing retreat or B&B set-up. There are actual writing spaces for rent in various cities internationally. A list of some of them can be found here but I have a sampling below.

The Toronto Writers’ Centre, for instance, has various rooms including a lounge, kitchen, boardroom, and this Quiet Room.


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If you’re ever in the Charlottesville, Virginia area, stop by WriterHouse. They have workshops, classes, and other writerly events. They also have private rooms to rent out like this one:


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Maybe a slightly longer commute is in order, but hey, if it gets you inspired, why not go to The Writers’ Room of Hamburg?


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5) A Room with a View

Speaking of inspired, get a load of this. I stumbled upon this on houzz. For those who don’t know, this website offers a collection of pictures to help inspire you to create a dream home or any space you have in mind. It’s like Paper Dolls for architect and interior design enthusiasts. A complete aside, you should check it out because it’s just too awesome.

Back to the writing space. This picture is breathtaking. Of course, it’s not letting me post the pic and the WordPress embed feature isn’t working, but wowza. Click here and you’ll see why this is beeyooteeful. Tell me this won’t get the creative juices flowing!


I enjoyed this week’s FRIDAY FORAGE. Whether it’s a nook, a desk, or an open field, I hope you find a place to call your own where you can get into the zone.


Which reminds me:


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September 11

On This Day Twelve Years Ago

September is a month of mixed emotions for me. First, it’s my birth month so I should be happy about that. However, in recent years, September also meant the loss of people I came to know, one in a car accident, another in a shooting, and another through suicide. As emotionally draining as those events were, nothing could prepare me for what happened on this day twelve years ago which has now made this date in human history a tragedy of epic proportions.

I couldn’t believe the news footage. In fact, I thought it was a movie until my family sat down and realized the truth. The first tower had already come down and they showed repeat after repeat. When the second tower was hit and then the Pentagon, I think I stopped breathing for awhile.

We have family and friends in New York.  Fortunately, they were alright. Unfortunately, that was not the case for many other families and friends. I think it took me several weeks to pull myself out of the misery by association.

What right did I have to be affected? I was so far removed from the events because a) I was on the other side of the world, different continent, different hemisphere, and b) I didn’t personally know anyone involved.

And yet, I dragged myself through the day and wept at any given moment.


Because we are all connected. This world is so vast and yet in the grand scheme of things, we’re tiny specks in the known universe.

As I writer, I want to craft stories that examine why people do what they do. It’s the why that always get me.

And it’s the why that devastated me twelve years ago. It still hits me today. I cannot watch any footage about that day without crying.

Am I far removed? Am I not involved?

This dark moment in our history affects us all and despite the gravity of the situation and whatever heinous machinations behind the attacks, it is a reflection of who we are as people.

I am affected. I am involved.

When we understand the why of things–and the why may not be as rational as one expects–it will help us learn, grow, communicate better, and ultimately reach beyond the ordinary and become better than we are. We have the potential. We just need to make the effort.

Try as I might to ignore September 11, 2001, I cannot and will not. In some cases you truly cannot leave the past behind. However, it should not haunt us year after year. Rather, twelve years hence, we are wiser, stronger, and I’d like to think better people than we were on that day.

To me, as painful as the memory still is, I see hope in the aftermath. And I hope and pray for humanity.


Why not?

Blog Post, The First

Hello, World.

In five days, I will embark on a grand journey of writerly proportions. I made a declaration on Twitter, so it’s for realsies, folks. TWO STORIES, ONE MONTH, and ME. And I will blog about the experience. Why, you ask? Last year I completed drafts for a screenplay, two novels, and a short story. I could have said that this year would be the year of revisions, but why stop there? I always have a story brewing. I want to push the creative envelope and it just so happens that April is packed with creative envelope pushing opportunities.

Last night, however, I added something new to the mix. I’d seen tweets and posts about the Blogging A to Z challenge. In order to do that, I needed an actual blog, so here we are.

In the next three days, I’ll share with you more information about:

1) Camp NaNoWriMo (
2) Savvy Authors April Boot Camp (
3) Blogging A to Z Challenge (

And on the eve of this epic feat, I’ll tell you more about the stories I’ll be working on for these challenges.

April. Thirty Days of Words. It’s going to be intense.

Thanks for coming with me,