I’ve always been fascinated by writers’ workspaces. You can see from the first pic here (the ‘office’ of the late-great E.B. White, with the man himself hard at it) that each writer’s environment is different and, as such, very personal. Writing tools and technology have changed so much through the years, altering what is required when one sits down to do the job. But there are some elements that seem consistent, such as the need for solitude and the quiet that comes with it. Isolation is perhaps the most common stated requirement by fellow writers, I have noted. And I’m no different—distractions from the ‘real world’ need to be caged during work hours, as they have no place in the fictional universe.

Here’s my own workspace, located in the den of my home. I like to keep it relatively neat and orderly (although I don’t think I’ll ever go full-out Felix Unger on it). Also note that it’s not a particularly large area. I like that. It gives me a more intimate connection not just with the computer itself, but with whatever material I’m forging at the time.

With so much negativity floating around these days like clouds of poisonous gas, it seems like a good idea to keep some reminders posted that the world really isn’t as Big and Bad as we sometimes presume. A healthy frame of mind starts with focusing on the positive.

This is a pencil sketch I did of my daughter when she was about five or six. One look provides all the comfort, warmth, and inspiration I need to get through even the lousiest days.