Thursday, January 17, 2013

Chaos and Creativity

For some of us, being creative means being messy. When I take on a project, whether big or small, I inevitably make a mess wherever I happen to be working. I thought having an office dedicated to my writing would help me keep the clutter to one room, but I don't always feel like working in my office. Sometimes, I'll write in bed. Other times, like this past week, I set up shop in my living room because it's just too cold in my office upstairs.

And the clutter has followed me.

Exhibit A:


Why I can work surrounded by all this clutter mystifies me. I don't even notice the mess.

Inevitably, though, I will notice and get tired of it. That's when the cleaning spree happens. I sort paperwork, put books back on the shelf, vacuum, etc., etc..

But the mess always returns despite my best efforts to keep it at bay.

I think I've made my peace with it because this poster says it all:

Thank goodness!

Can you work in clutter or are you just the opposite?

20 comments:

  1. My own clutter, no problem. My kids' clutter - big problem! Fortunately they will still clean for cookies.

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    1. Haha! Isn't that the truth, though? When I see my husband's clutter, it drives me insane. My daughter, on the other hand, keeps her room pretty spotless. I have hardly ever had to tell her to clean it.

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  2. My work areas inevitably become cluttered, but every now and then, usually when I'm about to start a new project, I put everything in order. I manage to keep it clean for at least half a day :)

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    1. I do the same. Starting off a project with a clean desk is always a good thing, even if it doesn't stay clean for long. :)

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  3. My desk vacillates between cleared and not, and I seem to do okay. On my mom's fridge is a sign that reads Dull Women Have Immaculate Houses; the same could be said for writers and their work spaces. :)))

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    1. LOL! I love that saying! I definitely do not have an immaculate house OR desk. =D

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  4. Melissa-Nothing around my house stays tidy for long. Inspiration and messiness tend to feed off of each other, and a perfectly neat house lasts about as long as a plate full of brownies...brownies that get eaten while I'm hard at work being creative:)

    I wouldn't want you to be any other way, my friend:)

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    1. Aww, thanks, dear friend. The living room now looks worse than the picture above since I spent all weekend working on my next article. I don't seem to mind it, but I'm sure I will soon! =D

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  5. I can work in a clutter--you should see our makeshift office--awful! But it works for now. Had to stop in and see how you are doing!

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    1. As long as you can work in clutter, you're good to go! =D

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  6. I'm not very tidy but I do know where everythng is, which is slightly different. Or my excuse!

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    1. My dad is the same way. He knows where everything is in his clutter. Once, my mom cleaned his office because she couldn't stand it anymore. He didn't know where to look for his stuff, so that was the last time she did that!

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  7. I have a hard time writing in chaos. I can't write until I've gotten up and cleaned... which maybe is just my excuse for procrastinating. :)

    I work in our basement, in a room that is highly used, but also very organized.

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    1. Sometimes, I actually think I write better once I clear the clutter and get to work - I've mostly found that to be true on the novel. So my non-fiction writing is different - I seem to need the clutter around me. Weird, I know!

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  8. I hate, hate, hate clutter - and it follows me everywhere. I'm constantly nagging hubby to sort out his clutter but rarely get around to sorting out my own. The one thing I really love about getting the latest book to my editor is taking a day off to sort out my office. I marvel at how lovely it looks, and vow to keep it that way so that I can work more creatively, and it lasts for about a day. :)
    I love the poster!

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    1. Isn't it funny how we always vow to keep it clean and we never do? LOL!

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  9. I seem to leave a trail of books, notepads, laptop etc whenever I'm writing.

    I love that notice and think I should print one up for my house!

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    1. It is a lovely saying, isn't it? :)

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  10. I like to say I live and work in a "controlled chaos" environment and leave it up to people to decide what to make of that! Depending on my mood also determines how messy or tidy things are but I'm not anywhere near "hoarder" status...unless you look at my book collection... ;-)

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    1. Oohh. The book collection. Now that is a serious problem of mine, though I've tried to hold back lately. I rarely buy fiction books (I just go to the library for those) but I'm a total sucker for the history books. I don't even have enough shelf space right now for all of them and I refuse to invest in a Kindle/Nook yet. =D

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