Creative Spaces — Guest Post by Flick Merauld

Creative Spaces

I suppose, in many ways, my workspace is like an extension of myself – though I’m not the only person who uses it: my granddaughter claims the computer whenever she comes here, and my partner collects his email from it from time to time. It’s in the hub of the house as well, in the dining room, not in some cosy office or den tucked away from noise and disturbance. Consequently I have people stopping to chat when I’m trying to work (why is it nobody thinks a request not to talk to you can possibly include them!) But somehow this arrangement seems to make it easier for me to get on and write. There are no barriers to break; there’s no countdown to when I have to be there and knuckle down. I can wander off to the kitchen for coffee or a snack or out to the garden. I have dogs coming to lie at my feet and cats wandering across the keyboard. And, of course, the Internet is slumbering under my fingertips, waiting to surge into life whenever I get stuck and need a brief (or not so brief) distraction. Not only that, but the huge mirror behind the computer space reflects the garden, so that I can watch the changing weather and the wheeling seasons, comfortable and sheltered but still feeling connected to Nature and all her inspiring beauty – as I write this, I can see the frosty trees, while later in the year there’ll be daffodils, the unfurling of apple blossom and lilac, then roses, and the flurried activity of birds and squirrels.

Beginning work is easy. I kind of drift in and out, potter and do other things, slip into my space and get absorbed in whatever the current project is, drift off again to the shops or to read for a bit, make some food. I don’t write to music, though, as I find it incredibly distracting. While all this seems very casual and undisciplined, I actually do get a huge amount done when I’m in full creative flow. As I’m a photographer as well as a writer, and process images in Photoshop, my space isn’t for one activity only, and I think that makes my approach more fluid than it might have been otherwise.

Creative Spaces Guest Post by Flick Merauld

Flick Merauld in her creative sanctuary

Thirteen years ago, when I first began writing for publication, I was quite superstitious about my workspace and wouldn’t move or change anything while a book was in progress. Between 1999 and 2004, I wrote a series of books on Paganism for the American Mind/Body/Spirit publisher, Llewellyn, using the pen name Elen Hawke; from the time each of these books was started till it was sent off to the publisher, I wouldn’t move so much as a pen from it’s place on my worktop. When my partner first came to live with me, he decided to tidy up around the computer and I went ballistic – I actually felt invaded. Nowadays I’m less pernickety. Since I began publishing onto Amazon KDP/Kindle, I find I’m quite happy if things get removed or displaced. Maybe it’s the nature of my novels, the Aunt Sally series (The Aunt Sally Team and Aunt Sally & More) and The Sacred Marriage, but I find the whole process of writing much more enjoyable now. Maybe it’s also because I can set my own deadlines, rather than writing to a publishing schedule as I did for Llewellyn. I’m even writing two books at once at the moment, a third Aunt Sally and a sequel to The Sacred Marriage.

I think kind of catching myself unawares — sitting down and looking at what I’ve written, making corrections etc. then deciding to write a bit more, rather than giving myself a strict schedule — works best for me. I love writing, whether it’s answering questions in email discussion lists, chatting on Facebook or Twitter or getting stuck into a new novel. I think I’m privileged to spend my life in activities that I enjoy so much: reading, writing, photography and illustration. So my workspace, where I do all this, is a happy place for me to be.

Bio: Flick Merauld is a writer artist and photographer and plonks around on harp and guitar. As well as training in photography and graphic design at art school, she’s travelled all over the world and done many different jobs including barmaid, farmhand and factory worker. She’s now very happily settled in the beautiful but eccentric city of Oxford (United Kingdom) with her partner and family.

Having had several well known non-fiction books published by the American publisher Llewellyn, under the pen name Elen Hawke, she turned her hand to writing fiction, resulting in novels that include the best selling The Aunt Sally Team (UK visit http://amzn.to/MgZRmW) based on a riotous summer spent playing the old fashioned English pub game of the same name, and its sequel, Aunt Sally & More ( UK visit http://amzn.to/12fQSIy) Both these books combine love, sex, relationships and humour with depth and insight. Her novel The Sacred Marriage (UK visit http://amzn.to/LhdwVm), set in Brittany and Oxford, is written in a more serious vein.

You can visit Flick Merauld‘s blog, cats dogs & eBooks: life love & having a novel published, and visit her Facebook page

Creatives Spaces by Flick MerauldCreatives Spaces by Flick MerauldCreatives Spaces by Flick Merauld

Creative Spaces is a new guest blog series that invites you to take a peek into writer’s special workspaces. Come back often to read the intriguing guest posts.

Comments

  1. Reading your ‘Creative Spaces’ post, Flick, reminds me of the Aunt Sally books: so vividly described that the views play out so clearly in my mind. My desk is the most beloved spot in the house; I can see that yours is too. I don’t have an Isha or other canines like you; I can, however, resonate with cats and keyboards! Somehow, it tickles me that you are less spernickety now :-}

  2. Thanks for your kind words, Dody 🙂 I would say my creative space is my favourite place while I’m writing, but I’m also very fond of curling up with a book in the living room. However, all my most loved activities revolve around books one way or another x

  3. Victoria M. Johnson says:

    Flick–
    Your space sounds wonderful! And you are so productive (and creative) in it. Thank you for participating in this guest series.

    Victoria–

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