Writers' Spaces: Athol Dickson
Recently we became enamored with learning about writer's spaces--the offices, corners, and cubbyholes where novelists shut out the universe and venture into their story worlds. We've asked our Charis Connection authors to share photos and comments about their writing spaces . . . and we'll sprinkle them in over the next few weeks. Enjoy!
The painting is a Victorian beach scene. My wife says I should face the window, but the people on the street outside are more distracting than the proper ladies with their bonnets and hoopskirts, and besides, all that sunlight behind the computer screen gives me a headache.
One desk drawer is missing. It was broken when we moved here, and I hope to get it back from the repair shop soon. Maybe it’s a metaphor for something. What does it mean when the alternative to a full drawer is not an empty one, but no drawer at all?
The trash can is full because I just paid my bills, and no, I do not pay them by throwing them away, it’s just there are a lot of extra bits of paper for some reason. Attention Al Gore: I am convinced the rainforests could be saved if you would please banish this.
The bright orange book is The Chicago Manual of Style, with which I disagree violently concerning the possessive form of nouns ending with an “s”.
On the far corner of the desk is an ingenious spinning book display, which can hold up to five open references at once, and was invented by Thomas Jefferson. The original is at Monticello. I believe Mr. Jefferson used his to a better effect, but one tries.
The little white things on the computer are “Post-Its” with reminders to do things. I like to pretend this method will inspire me to take action, but both of them have been there for many weeks. One of them has something to do with changing my address, and the other simply says, “Wicker.”
The back of the chair is broken and has been for three years. One day I’ll get another.
Athol Dickson is the author of The Gospel according to Moses and River Rising, and coming this July, The Cure. http://www.atholdickson.com/