If you’re a dedicated writer, you’ve probably got your favorite spot to write. Maybe you curl up in a little nook in your bedroom or plunk down at the kitchen table. But sometimes you need to get out of the house. You need inspiration. While routine can be good, very good, writers benefit by shaking things up every once in a while. Feed your creative soul with different sights, sounds, and smells of life outside of the usual. You need creative spaces to write.
Here are a few places that may take your brain on a little inspiration vacation.
5 Creative Spaces
If you are a regular follower, you know that I routinely hang out at Panera for my morning writing. I used to walk down Main St. in my town wishing I was one of those “coffee shop people.” One day I walked in and decided to be one.
For around $2 a day, I get a comfortable place to plop my computer, a hot cup of coffee, and regular “officemates” to make the job more interesting. I like working with the hum of humanity in the background and an occasional shot of local buzz going on around me. I feed off people chatting and laughing while watching expressions for clues about what’s really going on behind the smile. For me, it’s part escape and part community gathering space. It’s my office and I’m a better writer for it.
The library, sanctuary of books. When quiet is the only way to go, the public library is the place to be. Free wifi, large working spaces, and a whole new cast of characters make this a go-to place when there is a deadline looming. Perfect for those who cherish the sound of turning pages and inspiration that comes only from being surrounded by the crafted words of generations of writers.
If you’re doing research, you’ve got more than the internet or even the wide variety of source materials in the space. You have reference librarians waiting to help you discover hard to reach gems or give you insight into where to search for the best stuff.
Whether you venture out to a national or state park or wander over to a local picnic bench, you are sure to gain inspiration from your surroundings. Nature inspired the greats like Emily Dickenson and Ralph Waldo Emerson and countless others who fed and still feed off the beauty, solitude, and wonder of the world.
Even if you aren’t writing about nature, being in contact with the rhythm and beauty produces mind-altering results if you sit long enough and let it in. Allow yourself to be connected to the life of trees swaying, the breeze blowing, and the birds that fill both with song. Maybe your nature exists in the middle of a busy city or town and the chirping of birds is drowned out by the sound of cars driving by or squealing children avoiding being tagged “it.” No matter. Take the breeze, the sun, or the crunch of leaves under your feet and use it to power your thoughts.
Wanna get away? If you have the luxury of leaving it all behind, whether for a night or longer, use someone else’s space to inspire your creativity. You can try out a beach, lake, or mountainside retreat, or spend the weekend in a loft in the city. Look for possibilities to connect with a different part of your brain that comes with altering your location. You may find inspiration from a knickknack on a shelf or the view out the window or the conversation you have with the owner. Be on the lookout for the spark that ignites your thoughts.
Can’t get out of town? Have a “retreat” with another writer at their home or offer to house-sit for someone going out of town. The most important thing is to get out of your own space. Wherever that space may be.
As writers, we don’t often think of ourselves as having a business. But if you plan to make any money on the sale of your book or resulting workshops and speaking gigs, you clearly are a business owner. With that in mind, check out a local co-working space. It’s a novel way to get solopreneurs out of the house and into an office-like setting without the burden of a renting office space full time.
The added benefit and one that is fueling the growing trend toward co-working is the inspiration, and sometimes collaboration, that comes with working with like-minded travelers. Each participant in the space is striving to build a business, develop a new concept, or grow into a “real” office space. Being among this upwardly mobile crowd can bring an entirely new energy to your writing and help you build your network. You’ll cherish your network, especially when your book is finished.
Here is a short clip of my day in a local co-working space, The Hub in Wilmington, DE. My goal for the day was to work on the resource guide for my upcoming online video course. But since I was alone for a while, I decided to film a little silliness and write this post instead. I felt truly inspired.
Where will you write next? Let us know where you’ve written and how it inspired you. If you haven’t tried it yet, where do you WANT to write?
Ready to write your book but don’t how to start, how to finish, or lack the motivation to get you to the finish line?
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