My Cacophonous Mess
So they asked what my office looks like.
Depends which office.
Late spring through early fall my office is my screened-in back porch. I have a big table I found on sale at Wal-Mart, and a comfy desk chair (also on sale). For five hours everyday I take my laptop outside and write write write…or edit. It has a dog door so my dogs can go in and out to the fenced backyard as they please. It is the best office in the world, eh? It’s not pretty. The porch looks run-down, the indoor-outdoor carpet old; it was like this when we bought the house. I’ve put up nice window blinds, fans, and I know better than to try and replace the carpet. I have four dogs (don’t ask…that’s for another story). Oh, I work more than five hours a day, but I have to spend a couple hours in my indoor office to keep my parrot company.
My inside office, a dedicated room with file cabinets, beautiful walnut desk, and a desktop computer, is a cacophonous mess. Here’s the deal. I have a parrot, as I mentioned in the paragraph above, a miniature macaw that’s roughly 30 years old. The best place for her is the office, where she can’t bite friends who come over and where she isn’t too close to a wall to chew on it. I give her freedom, open her big cage, she can go in and out as she pleases and clamber around on top and play with toys. The walls in my office were never repainted when we moved in (don’t ask…that’s for another story), and so she can’t really hurt them. I spread newspapers out all around this big cage to protect the old carpet that wasn’t replaced when we moved in. My husband figured it was just an office, right? It didn’t need to look nice. Sigh.
I have four dogs. And sometimes they shred the newspaper under the bird cage, like they’re making confetti for a parade. Dogs gotta have something to do, right? And sometimes the dogs go nose-to-nose with the parrot and they have interesting conversations (really). The parrot talks, sings, scolds the dogs, and tells them “shut up” when they bark. The dogs squeak toys and play…always in my office, as they want to be with me. So my office is noisy. I’ve learned to tune it out. And it’s a mess…newspapers, errant bird seeds, dog toys everywhere.
A cacophonous mess. And it’s wonderful. It’s colorful. It’s lively. I am not lonely here. I am never lonely when I write.
Now…I do clean up my office; once a week. Wag fingers at me if you must. But I’m a writer and so I will write write write, edit, toss tennis balls, take my pug for a little walk, then write write write. Picking up my office happens once a week.
It’s wonderful, my cacophonous mess. Life is better with dogs. And I’d rather have the dogs than a tidy office.
My office is also filled with narrow bookcases containing interesting and eclectic reference books about medieval garb, food in the Middle Ages, knights, trees, fish, rocks, word origins, dictionaries, and a thesaurus. Oh, I almost forgot…Italian aviators in WWI, WWII slang, a dictionary of battles, and forensics.
My decor is finished with Beanie Babies. I started a tradition with my first novel, I bought a Beanie Baby pug dog to celebrate. I could hardly justify buying one otherwise. I have 38 dog Beanie Babies on shelves around my office and across the top of my desk.
Because I have 38 books published.
I’m currently shopping the 39th, and I’ve started on the 40th. I found some Beanie Babies on eBay…they’re in a little bag in my office…waiting to join the rest.
The Dead of Night
Order The Dead of Night on Amazon by clicking HERE
The Dead of Winter
Find The Dead of Winter on Amazon by clicking HERE
And my Amazon author page HERE