The New Desk

Got home from my LA travels this week to discover the new desk had arrived and been set up in the office:

Those of you with memory will note the desk is considerably smaller than my previous work desk, and intentionally so: Having a massive L-shaped desk proved conducive to gathering clutter, something I’m hoping to avoid from here on out. The new desk has room for a monitor, a keyboard and a couple of other things, and that’s pretty much it. I also commissioned a matching filing cabinet, which you also see here. I suspect I may shuffle a few things around, but by and large, this is what it will look like moving forward.

Still awaiting arrival: The new bookshelves, and when they arrive, additional furniture and wall hangings, at which point the office will be officially complete. But now that the desk is in I can start working in the office again, which is a nice feeling after a couple of months of exile. It’s good to be home, basically.

By John Scalzi

I enjoy pie.

35 replies on “The New Desk”

Now that you’re back from exile (huzzah)…these bookshelves of which you speak. Are they a custom job as well? And will there be photos?

I ask on account of I’m trying to decide how to do bookshelves for my office and and i find that when I ask people for ideas on bookshelves they tend to furrow an eyebrow and say something declarative like “well, bookshelves” and then frown again implying a “?”.

I find this to be remarkably unhelpful in finding something interesting to do.

It’s an open question to anyone currently, or previously, geeking out on bookshelves.

I hate to be a spoil sport but it won’t last. I thought I could down size and the papers would disappear. Nope. I just ended up using the floor, dragging in t.v. trays and various other surfaces to put my stuff on. *sigh* I hope it works for you.

BTW, home probably just feels good.

I’m a neat desk fanatic, probably from years of having very tiny workspaces often overstuffed with necessary storage and equipment and other people’s projects. Keeping everything minimalist and efficient was a survival technique, a preservation of sanity. So, I understand the lure of the small desk.

However, I dream one day of having a capacious desktop to strew and litter and lounge upon. It will have to be some manner of addition to the antique (and very small) secretary I have, but I’m looking forward to the challenge of keeping a lot of desk real estate as tidy as I did all my efficiency workspaces.

There’s always the floor around you.

I like the desk. Looks really good with the floor and the paint. Can’t wait to see it all finished. Yay for being able to work in your office too.

Minimal and nice, I’ll picture you there while reading your books from now on ;o) I myself prefer a somewhat larger table…I’m prone to collecting clutter and I have given up thinking that with less space I’ll collect less things, they simply are piled up in other places

That is a small desk. In my little flat I have a small computer stand, but I still manage to accumulate clutter around my monitor. Sigh – one day I’ll learn how to be clutter free.

#3 Other Bill – on the bookshelf front, I have discovered that the width of the bookshelves is very important. I like narrow bookshelves, so that books don’t disappear towards the back of the shelf, and so that I don’t hide books by putting my clutter in front of them. Ideally shelf spacing has to fit hardbacks on the lower shelves, and then should be smaller higher up for paperbacks.

I would think 2 monitors would be more productive. you can run word in the two page format and do one page in each window so it is larger.

I am a programmer and I find 2 monitors greatly increases productivity. i am really not sure that the work style of a programmer is much different than a writer (yes the skillset is different, but how we work and organize is similiar).

You definitely earn a place on the diminutive desk list, John. However, not at the top. (Or would that be bottom?)

Among big-time writers, smallest desk I’ve seen is the homemade affair at Orchard House in Concord, Massachusetts. Louisa May Alcott wrote LITTLE WOMEN on it, among other things. Best photo I can find is here, though you have to scroll down a bit:

At least she had good light …

Either I’m colour blind, your camera flash is different or is the wall a different colour??

Wasn’t it brown and mint green?
Please correct me if I’m wrong.

Love the desk. It’s so awesome when you can get customer furniture and support local economy.

So I did a comparison check with earlier desk picture and new desk and I think I know what the advantage of the smaller desk actually is.

More floor space for the stacks of books. The old desk just took up to much “symetrical book stacking” room. 8D

I envy your fancy desk setup but I do not envy the lack of desk space. Good luck in your endeavors with less desk. :P

Do like the window nearby. I have to keep my window shades down – crazy barking dog goes crazy and barks. ;)

I like very much. Beautiful finish. I’d feel very mentally cozy in a space like that.

My SO is currently building a huge desk for me, with lots of slots, shelves and cupboards. Can’t wait – I’ll be able to stack my CDs and papers a lot less precariously.

Nice comfy looking chair too.

Always feels good to have a nice writing space.

“It starts with this: put your desk in the corner, and every time you sit down there to write, remind yourself why it isn’t in the middle of the room. Life isn’t a support system for art. It’s the other way around.” – Stephen King, On Writing

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