Friday, June 28, 2013

January - June 2013: Workspaces

Since I decided to write full time in 2009 I've constantly refined, moved, and defined my workspace. More than just moving things around, I've gone from various chairs, to a standing desk, and back to a sitting desk. The state of my workspace has become a window into my work and my own well being. 

I didn't abandon the standing desk because it wasn't a good set up for me. I still have it sitting in the basement in the event I want to go back to it. I was tired after the first six months of the year and the thought of standing for 8-10 hours a day was difficult to reconcile with my physical state. It was a decision arrived at through what I still feel was wisdom garnered over the last three years. 

After a summer of riding my bike, resting, working out, eating better, and finishing a great many things, I'll need my standing desk back I've no doubt. I'll be stronger, and ready to create new things as opposed to relying on my common endurance to merely finish things. My own creative cycle is not unlike a very long day where one wakes, works on their feet, tires, finds a place to sit, and eventually rests. 

Having endured every level of emotional and physical strength over those three years, and keeping track either through word or photograph has helped. Even if you don't keep a log as a creative person, the best thing one can do is take a picture of your workspace and date it. Sometimes looking back at my old workspaces has given me far more perspective than a log ever has. 

Refining the tools one uses and the way they work within ones workflow hasn't been as enlightening for me. I've gone through something like four laptops, two ultrabooks, a netbook, two tablets, a desktop, and two smartphones trying to strike the right balance. The search goes on for the best device (or devices) for my own process and workflow. I think if someone made a device like the Lenovo Yoga, with a backlit keyboard, pen digitizer, sim card equipped, and 12-hour battery life that would be ideal. At least on paper.  

Finally feeling somewhat settled in Wichita I've been productive. Not as much on my Windows Phone game as I would like, but I've done more work on my novels in the last two months than I did in the six months previous. My log and recollection seems to indicate that this is an exaggeration but it certainly feels that I've done more lately than the first part of the year. 

In 2010-2011 I wrote three novellas, all part of the same story. It's a story I've gone through different phases of loathing for (hatred, disgust, etcetera). Previous to moving to Kansas I probably hadn't looked at them for a year. They really did frustrate me that much. Having given the work some space I came back to them and found I liked them better having been granted some much needed perspective in the interim. 

If you're a writer particularly, keep everything. Your work may yet have merit in a different time or in that odd situation where you find yourself to be a different person. Hey, it happens occasionally.

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