Saturday, September 3, 2011

Workspace and Work Tips--Rob Sanders

Week of August 28: Workspaces and Work Tips from Writing Friends
Saturday, September 3: Author Rob Sanders

I suppose it’s only fair that I give you a peak into my office. I have to admit I’m put to shame by the organized, tidy offices we’ve seen this week. My office is not quite like that.

Papers and books for my latest projects are stacked beside my computer. Notes are pinned to my bulletin border—a coupon (wonder it that’s still good), notes from friends (including Lisa Wheeler), business cards of folks I’m forming an online critique group with, and so. My constant companion sits next to the computer—my desk fan! (Yes, Tammi Sauer keeps a spaceheater running and I keep a fan running! What can I say? It's Florida.)

The cubby on the right side above the desk holds my Shrine of Weird and Sacred Objects. Religious artificats, pins from Florida SCBWI, my bean from my Magic Bean Ceremony (thanks Joyce!), a cowboy in honor of my first picture book, and more.

On top of the desk (and elsewhere in the room) are toys from my childhood and a Wagon Train lunchbox, just like the one I carried every day to elementary school.

My shelves are overflowing with picture books. (By the way, it's time for a new shelf.) See them stacked here and there? And I just found another of picture books I brought home from school and hid in a closet. I love these books. They serve as a source of inspiration and knowledge. On top of the shelf is my Curious George chalkboard—a purchase from my local Borders when it went out of business as well as books from my childhood and few of my childhood toys.

Here in the closet is my collection of chapter books, non-fiction, and teacher-type titles. I also keep a wealth of supplies here, so I can grab what I need when inspiration hits. (Love that I can shut the doors on the whole mess when I’m tired of looking at it.)

My office is in the guest room. But don't plan on staying without calling ahead. I organize writing lessons, drafts of books, and other things on the bed. I do tend to spread out when I’m working.

My tips for your workspace . . .
1. Embrace your weirdness . . . I mean uniqueness.
2. Gather around you the things you love.
3. Gather around you the things that inspire you.
4. Gather around you the things that remind you of, or represent childhood.
5. Gather up books--they are the best teachers, mentors, and pals.
6. Make yourself comfortable in your office--you should be spending a lot of time there.
7. Find what works for you, then work it!


Rebecca Gomez said...

I just bought a big canvas to hang over my desk. I plan to use it like a cork board. Maybe I will be more productive if some of the mess is on the wall instead of the desk. By "mess" I mean visually appealing, organized papers and inspirational what-nots, of course.

Rob Sanders said...

Cool idea, Rebecca! Let us know how it works for you.

Notes from a Virtual Easel said...

Oh! Almost as messy and eccentric as mine!
Thanks : )