My writing desk

Exclusive behind-the-scenes look!

Hi everyone — first off, don’t forget to respond to the latest prompt here:

Share your response here

Next, the video. I put a lot of thought into what goes on my writing desk in an effort to inspire a creative conditioned response, so I made a quick video walkthrough. If you don’t feel like watching the (future award winning) video, here’s a rundown:

  • Dictionary: when I’m looking to replace a word that I use too often, I look it up in a dictionary rather than a thesaurus — this helps me to think about what I’m actually trying to say and to find the true word that I need, rather than a clunky replacement.

  • Hourglasses: I use these to create a concrete timeframe around writing sprints, which helps to prevent overthinking.

  • Random internet thing I’m reading: I like to print stories and articles that people send to me and read them at my desk.

    • This one, Upon This Rock by John Jeremiah Sullivan, is an incredible report about a Christian rock festival in the early aughts.

  • Books: I keep a mix of books on my desk to support my writing habit — books on writing, books I love, and weird books for weird prompts.

    • Book on writing: Several short sentences about writing, Verlyn Klinkenborg.

      • This random tip that I flipped to goes nicely with my reasoning for using a dictionary instead of a thesaurus: “Pursue clarity instead. In the pursuit of clarity, style reveals itself. Your clarity will differ from anyone else’s without your intending to make it differ.”

    • Book I love: Jesus’ Son, Denis Johnson.

      • What a writing prompt this is: “I was after a seventeen-year-old belly dancer who was always in the company of a boy who claimed to be her brother, but he wasn’t her brother, he was just somebody who was in love with her, and she let him hang around because life can be that way.”

    • Weird book for weird prompts: Thought Forms, Anne Besant & C.W. Leadbeater.

      • Here’s a beautiful illustrated writing prompt:

One last point that I forgot to mention in the video — I used to have my desk up against a window, but I found the goings-on of the outside world to be too distracting, so now I stare at a wall and keep my various items around for productive distractions.

And that’s about it. Hope you found this helpful, please feel free to let me know in the comments! New prompt drops on Wednesday morning!