Tuesday, January 13, 2009

I've got the magic

When I was little, I loved to watch Cinderella – the Rogers & Hammerstein TV version featuring Leslie Warren. My favorite part was when she sang the song, “In My Own Little Corner” about how she could be anything her imagination wanted in that personal space. Now all grown up, I too, have such a magical space. I’ve most commonly heard it referred to as a Writer’s Cave.

At one point, my Cave consisted of a Sauder desk (complete with hutch) that I assembled myself. It has traveled from apartment to flat to my current home, where it originally bounced from a wall in the living room to a place I carved out for it in my bedroom between my lingerie chest and the bed. That's the Cave that birthed Where Souls Collide. Eventually, I relocated the desk to our unfinished basement and staked my first claim on an official writing territory.

I had the pleasure of hearing Beverly Jenkins speak at the Macomb Book Fair and Writers Conference last year where she shared the memory of her first offices; a closet, I believe, and the space under a stairwell. Like her, I have shared my Cave with many a spider over the years. And like the once untamed West, my territory and I have settled into each other.

I traded in the hutch desk for a more expansive corner unit that my oldest son helped me assemble. The hutch became a book and binder holder. I added a bookshelf and shelving unit. The patio blinds I hung to hide behind were replaced by drywall two years ago. (Ooooo!) Can You Believe in The Holiday Inn anthology was born there along with countless ideas for the Future File. And just last month I added another shelving unit to relieve, and retire, the 18-year-old hutch. In this new Cave, I've already conceived two new works in progress.

Just as educators tell parents to ensure that their children have a designated place to study, I think it’s important for writers to have their own little corner -- or Cave -- in the world.

Sure, I can write anywhere really. When pressed, my muse speaks in the car, on a plane, at my kids’ sports and dance practices, or at the park while I watch them play. I even wrote by candlelight when we lost power for two days during a recent snowstorm.

I'm sure my writing center will evolve as my craft continues to blossom. While an attic cove getaway overlooking water and trees would be wonderful, I am so cool with having this place that the entire household knows is MINE. Because when I hustle down the basement stairs, navigate the play area obstacle course before me and arrive at my softly-lit, Feng Shui-esque Cave in the corner, then, the magic begins.


Treat yourself to Brandy's rendition of "In My Own Little Corner"

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