The Space (Or Lack Of) to Write

Writing 101: Day 6


My family has encouraged me for years to write a book. Anyone that knows me will tell you that I’ve had the bug for years. It took me decades before finally getting the courage to leap into the freelance writing arena, but here I am.

I’m holding down a full-time day job (gotta eat) and doing the majority of my writing at home – at my kitchen table. Ideal? Absolutely not! But there’s still a part of me that 1) Has to be in the middle of the action, and 2) Doesn’t want to shut out the family. Silly, right?

It’s not like I have little kids at home. My daughter and her boyfriend are in their 20s, both have great jobs and are more than capable of taking care of themselves. My husband of 34 years is also quite handy in the kitchen and most anything he sets his mind to, so why do I feel the need to still take care of them?

I have a good sized home, with a real office and desk space if I choose. Do I ever work there? Nope.

I even have this enormous dining room table with plenty of space to spread out and secure a little privacy. Do I ever work there? Nope.

Instead, I sit at our kitchen table, night after night, tapping away on the laptop keys – fighting the distractions of a too-loud television, conversations about the daily grind and interruptions too numerous to mention. I tell the family that I “need to write,” but they don’t seem to believe me. Do you?

Did you select the third option? Well, I know that’s the right answer (even though one and two have some merit). I’ve figured out a way to “have my cake and eat it too.” I do most of my research during the time when everyone is around. I cut and paste and save to my heart’s content, so when everyone eventually leaves the kitchen to do their own thing, I have all I need to “get to work.”

I often write late into the night when the house is quiet; but as a devoted night owl, it suits me just fine. Some day when the kids move out, and there’s some extra space for me to spread my writer’s wings, I may set up my own little corner. For now, doing what I love, in the midst of those I love, is just the best space to write.

I’d love to hear your comments. I have a feeling some psychologists out there might have some interesting ideas.


Debbie Dey

Image courtesy of Ambro at


12 thoughts on “The Space (Or Lack Of) to Write

  1. My writing space is also in the middle of it all! Like you, there are quieter spaces in my place that are more ‘suitable’ to writing, but that’s not where I have chosen. I have taken over one end of the sofa, with my laptop on a TV stand, and my notes spilling from the end-table to the coffee table. I find that most of my ideas come to me when I’m busiest… or when the most distractions are around. Like you, I do my research and take notes at those times, and do my writing later.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I feel the same way. I’m alone during the day, but still sit at the kitchen table, where there are many distractions, but it’s convenient. if i need a cup of coffee/some water/whatever- it’s right here. It’s too hot upstairs where my desk is to write, and the basement is away from my dog- who looks out the front window all day. He looks out the window, but at least I know he’s there. I’m trying to write a memoir, but always put that off because I find these more prominent things to do. But I think you’re okay doing how you do it; I like being in the middle of everything too. Because, what happens when you’re trying to look up a recipe and you need to look in your kitchen for the ingredients? My ADD definitely gets the best of me all the time.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I think my mood dictates where I need to be to write. Some days, I have to hide myself away in order to focus. Other days, I take comfort in sitting amidst the chaos. Do I get more done in a quiet, well-lit room at a comfortable desk? Sure I do, but I don’t always enjoy it as much.

    Liked by 2 people

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