Wednesday, October 08, 2008

the writing life

I finally got brave and unplugged the white Apple mouse I've been using for the past few days - and plugged in the funky black upright mouse I had insisted I needed. When it arrived, along with the keyboard, it looked so weird and felt so weird beneath my hand, I chose not to try it out.

But I kept feeling tension in my right forearm using the regular mouse, and yesterday I made the change.

I complained about it for five minutes, then it started to get easier. Today, it's like I've been using it forever. And the arm stays totally neutral and relaxed. My set-up is clunky looking, with cords and boxes and all the other stuff on this desk. Nothing matches anymore. I'm sitting with my feet up on a cardboard box recycled from the last UPS delivery. But suddenly I'm truly comfortable.

In addition to the new chair, keyboard, wrist rests, gel mouse pad, upright mouse, fancy foot rest (not!) and elevated screen, I'm now set up at the desk in the living room. I'm not sure why I no longer want to write in my garret, but I suspect it has something to do with ease of access. This way I can write while cooking. I can dash out to the barn and settle right back in to the pages without disappearing upstairs. It might not be permanent, but for now, I have a new office.

The newfound comfort has translated into writing/editing in several one-hour blocks both yesterday and today. Even better, it has resulted in many aha! moments with regards to book issues. In the bathtub yesterday, in the car today. I love when the book is right beneath the surface of my regular routine, bubbling up whenever there's a lull.

Today I actually went online and commented on LitPark, a wonderful site I haven't visited in several months. Head on over - there's a fascinating discussion about literary fiction and thrillers.

It's good to be back. I've been missing the writing life.


Laughing Orca Ranch said...

I'm very happy for you in that everything is falling into place helping you to be more comfortable while writing.

I would think that placing you writing area in an easily accessible place would also be a big boon, too.

When I used to do my scrapbooking, I found that having a location set up permanently, where I could leave all of my supplies and photos out, while also being in the middle of the activity of my normal life, made the world of difference in getting anything accomplished.

Maybe I need to do this again. I haven't scrapbooked for years! lol.


billie said...

Well, as I type this, I have two Corgis playing tag right behind me - this is one of the side effects of being downstairs. :)

I was so happy when we moved here and I finally had my dedicated writing space in the garret. I love it up there! But for some reason I just needed a change in workspace.

This desk looks out over the driveway and into the woods, so it's a nice view. We don't have TV so the living room is actually pretty quiet when I'm working here.

I would LOVE to see some of your scrapbooks!

Matthew said...

Very glad the new mouse is working out for you. We'll have to find the perfect permanent footrest that is just the right height and get that set up.

billie said...

Matthew, I'm surprised I'm loving this funky mouse so much. But it totally takes the strain away.

I can feel now if any piece of my set-up gets shifted, but the great thing is it's all very easy to put back into place. I'm also noticing that I tend to sit toward the left, throwing my right arm slightly off line.

I wonder if I also do this in the saddle...??? Who knew the ergonomic set-up would give me riding clues?

Grey Horse Matters said...

I say it doesn't matter where you write. So long as you are comfortable and the thoughts and ideas are flowing. Now that you are downstairs in the thick of things it may be just the little push you needed to get you writing again, and the new ergonomically situated chairs, mouse, UPS ottomans etc. will really contribute to some great stories.

billie said...

Arlene, that's it exactly - I'm really wanting to be in the "thick of things" right now, even while writing!

I hope you're right and that the move stimulates the work in a positive direction.

Chris said...

Ooh! Motivation to write - wanna pass some over this way!

billie said...

Consider it passed! I'm pretty happy to be back to work.