Friday, August 6

My Writerly Comforts and Undies

Ok, before you get your knickers in a knot over my no-such-word-as-writerly title, check out your knickers. Comfy? Nice springy elastic?

Exactly where I’m headed with this topic today.

What exactly do we writers need to make our lives more comfortable. Easy. Relaxed. Beneficial even.

No, it’s not entirely about underwear. Chances are I could type in a g-string if I absolutely HAD to, but God willing, we’ll never find out.

So, let’s start with our chair. Ergonomically correct it said on the side of the box when I bought it twelve years ago.

Now it’s more dilapidated than ergonomic. But that’s ok. We fit each other. My butt cheeks are permanently carved into the cushions.

My desk is a banquet table, and I change the tablecloth with the seasons, just to keep it perky. I have a variety of pens and pencils, stacks of paper, twenty or so books on writing in case I get stuck, some random pieces of jewelry, coupons for a free breakfast at Taco John.


I almost always wear sweats and a tee, in a variety of eye popping colors and patterns. Today is sweats of neon green with blue stripes and an I Heart IA t-shirt I bought for two bucks.

I’m generally barefoot, except in the vicious Iowa winters, and then it’s my brown slippers that look like humongous bear feet. The cats love those.

And every now and then a new object slides in, almost like a new baby trying to pass muster into an established family. The latest was the laser printer. Oh, the cats went wild. As soon as I fired it up, three or four cats went running for cover. When the paper came out with a little crinkle and whoosh, they all leapt into the air simultaneously and scattered to the four winds.

Then I put the green froggie towel over the top of the laser, and within moments a cat will be found sound asleep on the beast.

It’s comfortable.

I’ve added in a USB extender, a packet of cat treats, and an incense reed thingie I have NO idea how to work. Plus a fleece Christmas blanket in a violent green with dancing Santa’s and reindeer slung over the back of my much-maligned chair.
These are things that make me comfortable. And I think what makes us comfortable, makes us better able to concentrate on the writing, and less likely to wonder why our red lace g-string is climbing up into no-man’s land.

And underwire bras? Let’s not even go there.

So, what’s all in your comfort zone? What makes it easier for you to write and relax and “get in the zone”?

And sure, feel free to tell us about your underwear. Inquiring minds want to know.


(who didn’t mention scotch-a-roos as a writerly comfort, but should have)


  1. I like to have my MP3 player going with my child either nowhere to be found or tucked snuggly away in his bed. The laptop and I usually end up in our bedroom with the DH out playing on the main computer while I work away. Hard to get much more comfortable than that when the words flow.

  2. Huh - I'm going to head the completely oppposite direction. All I need is my laptop. Or any computer (can't tell you how many pages I've surruptitiously written at work). To me, that is the beauty of being a writer - the ease of doing it anywhere, anytime. If I'm sitting w/my fingers on a keyboard, I'm good to go!

  3. Carrie~
    You and I are soul sistas! I have a big desk that cost a fortune, but has deteriorated to a yard sale reject becasue of the many coffee cup rings and warped finish. It is covered with paper, unread RWRs, ink cartridges, name it.
    I have a corkboard above my desk that has a map of Arizona from when I wrote Wild Horses spread across it, fave pics of the pets, torn out pages of mags,cards from Brandi and friends and a few mementos from 4-H leader days. And as I said the other day, my certificates from contests hang above the desk too.
    In short, it's a big cluttered mess, but I love it, and I'm comforttable here.

  4. Tory, I'm one of those that can't listen to music while writing. It doesn't have to be absolute silence, but music seems to work the opposite on me! Distracting!

  5. Christi....hey, good for you! that makes writing so much easier! I've hand written small scenes at work, but waitressing and keyboarding don't mix! =)

  6. D'Ann...good for you! It's kind of like having your own writing nest isn't it.....=)

  7. Nest. That's the right word. Anywhere I can build a nest, I can write.

    Loved your post, Carrie, but I always do.

  8. Thanks Liz....I'm a little disappointed nobody's sharing their favorite underwear stories, but I'll be ok. *brave little smile*



  9. My favorites..Hanro all cotton black and nude colored bras that are very comfortable. Hanes all cotton bikini undies in an assortment of colors. (Happy now?)Yoga pants from Lands' End and lots of t-shirts with slogans. I sit at the kitchen counter on a bar stool with a cushion and one small pillow at the back. I rest my feet on the first empty shelf below the counter and Cheddar sleeps on the shelf below my feet. Small flatscreen t.v. on the counter next to cd player. I face the fridge across the kitchen...probably not a good thing.

  10. thanks jen for the underwear update. you made my day!


  11. Oh, geeze...Victoria's Secret cotton briefs. In, sigh, extra-large. I buy'em once or twice a year on sale. Bras...anything that's comfortable.

  12. Loved your post Carrie. Actually there are
    two desks in my office. When my husband
    gave me his office he looked so lonely,
    I offered half back to him. My favorite writing
    outfit is a pair of Homer Simpson boxers I got
    my husband for Christmas 4 years ago and a
    tank top. As for a bra. You're kidding. Aren't

  13. Thanks're a good sport!

  14. shawn..i share my workspace with my DH as well....we have an "L" configuration. I get the big part. =)

  15. I think if I had to share a workspace with my husband I'd probably have to kill him. He's so neat that he'd have to have everything in its place and clean. It would be bad for the marriage.

  16. hahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!! Need music, need a Coke...that pretty much covers it for me!