Find someone like you, but with a better office

03 May 2013 – The best part about being brave enough to tell people you are trying to be a writer, is discovering other people out there, trying to write as well, such as your really good friend, SM.

Last night we went to dinner at a SM’s and I saw her home writing office.  It was fantastic.  Her desk faces out a high window with a great view of the city.  She has a nice big desk, notice boards, filing cabinets and stuff everywhere.  I had no idea she was so serious, or so well set up.  The whole room felt very permanent and I got jealous.  I got office envy.  Yes, that’s right.  But it wasn’t a bad thing.  In fact, it was so motivating to see someone doing it just a bit better.  It seemed possible, standing in her office, looking back at the twinkling lights of North Sydney, clutching a glass wine & chatting about characters.

Jealously helped me to understand how important a permanent writing space is.  I need to purchase more writing props and get a notice board for attaching incredibly great ideas too.  Moving out of my share house has moved us in the right direction to make a regular writing space.

I am so happy to know this amazingly motivated lady and grateful she allowed me into a space that her Husband is not privy to.  I would like a few more writers in my life.

Moving somewhere cheaper

03 March 2013 – We are going to move!  We are going to move out of Sydney to somewhere cheaper.

In 2012 Sydney came 7th in the top 10 most expensive cities to live in the world  (SMH).  It is the most expensive place to live in Australia and it feels like it is only getting worse.   Rent has always been a cause for concern among the young creatives I have known.

The Emerging writer, writing, space, time.

Far South Coast

Many have moved to Melbourne and god forbid it, Canberra.  Others live in huge share houses, their own studios, at home with their parents or in Squats around the inner west.

At the moment I am working to afford a life close to my work.  It is a bad cycle to be in and one that needs to stop if I am to have any real time to commit to this change of career.  My fiance works online from home, so he can go anywhere.  So we are going to get out of here for a while.

We are going to move to Merimbula.

Hmmm. Genius?  I think yes.


The Moveable Feast; A Guide to Writing in Cafes

Writing in Cafes; The Ups and Downs

Sydney is a landscape of Cafes and coffee shops.  For most people in Sydney they will go to a cafe every single day.  But what are they for?  Are Cafes exclusively for people who are drinking coffee and nothing else?  Are Cafes just for the time wasters?  Are Cafes just for leisure?  I am writing this article right now in a café.  Which is only appropriate.  But am I being appropriate.

I am working right now, in a cafe, and many might want to roll down their windows as they drive past and yell at me to get an office!  But what if I were on Facebook right now – wasting time doing a leaisurely activity? Would I still be shunned for for laptop in a public recreational space?

Writing in Cafes, Emerging Writers, Writing in Australia

I work in a café now in Redfern, saving money as I continue to work on writing.  We have many writers and bloggers coming in and staying for a while.  They bring their laptops and their satchel bags and order a latte and settle in.  We don’t have free internet there and we know that people who bring there laptops tend to be doing ‘real’ work not just playing on the internet.  Not Facebook.  So should we kick them out, for being productive and abusing the privilege afforded the purchase of a single latte.

I say people should go for it.  As long as they are not taking up a table way too big for them.  They are no more a nucence then the mothers who buy one Baby chino and then have five people come and clean it up (how is that profitable??)  To say you cannot work in a cafe is to say that coffee is only for people with nothing better to do.  And who needs coffee more than writers??

How to turn your Café into your Office

The best approach to turning your local cafe into a part time office, is to just ask them.  Some cafes don’t mind if you work for a while and others do.  Don’t try and guess as to wether you are welcome or not, just ask.  Find out where you are going to be most welcome and head there to buy your coffee.

Tips from a waitress.

  • Always make sure you buy enough coffee to support the seat you are taking up.
  • Don’t ask if you can plug into the wall to charge up.  Its bad enough the cafe is not making very much money of us writers, we shouldn’t cost them anything.
  • Always be happy and smiley.
  • The best times to go are between the main meals.  Morning or afternoon tea times.
  • Understand that you might be moved, and be willing to move to a table with just one stool if you must.
I write at my work, and at a cafe called Cow and Moon at the moment.  They only sell coffee, so I know I am never taking up a lunch table.

Malcolm Gladwell, That Jerk at the Cafe?; The Problem with Writing in Coffee Shops 

Thinking Time

3rd December 2012 – So much of my time is spent thinking.  Writing is thinking – written down.

Right now I work somewhere that is perfect for thinking, at a cafe in Redfern.  I have worked there for more than fours years and though it can be quite a hard and physical job at times, I have been doing it for so long that it doesn’t take so much thought anymore, I am not learning anything, which can be so hard.  So today, at work I was thinking, really thinking.  Christmas is around the corner and I started to plan Christmas decorations this year.

The Emerging writer, writing, space, ideas.

My Second Writing Space

I wondered what religion some of my character were and weather or not they would celebrate Christmas, and how?  The radio was on at my work and I wondered if any of my characters could make music?  Or what they listened to.  I wrote notes and shoved them in my pocket.

My novel is going to be written on the back of a café docket, I swear it.

PS – This is my new writing space.  I got a desk and a chair from a good friend of mine and have put it into the spare room.  Everyone from the house uses it, but I don’t mind to share.  Its on loan.

Writing from your bed room

The Emerging Writer, Finding the Space

My First Work Space

I still don’t have anywhere to write.  This is me working from my bed, in my room in a share house in Sydney.  Ps, my rent is like, expensive.

So, say I was going to do this…Hypothetically.  I was really truly going to be a writer – just humour me for a second.  I guess I would want to write a book about where I am from.  I grew up in one of the most magical places on earth, but when I was a teenager, I missed it all.  The fantastic natural wonder of the place was lost on me.  Now I am starting to realise just how special it was.  All my ideas keep coming back to the bush brushing up against the sea.  In Merimbula trees and grass grow straight out of the sand, and then the mountains rise quickly behind them.

I have been doing a little research online and found some great news articles and photos and stories…  Making me want to go down for a few days and check the place out.

Might plan a trip home – Hmmm still have no money…Can go see Mum anyway while I’m down?  Could get Mum to pay for my trip???  I will call her.

No where to write!

Emerging writers desk, young writer

The only place that I have to write at the moment is on my bed.  Not good for my back.  Crumbs in the bed as I try and eat lunch while writing.  I am currently reading over all the old half told stories I have saved on my computer over the last 9 years and I’m realising that some are actually quite good, or at least they would be if I’d finished them.

Must get a desk.

If you are struggling to Find The Space in your home, check out our guide to creative uses of the space you have.