When I was at university I read Virginia Woolf’s A Room of One’s Own and it made a huge impression on me. At last I have a study in my house – a room designated specifically for work – and I love it. It’s only an ordinary room overlooking a street – no inspiring views – but whenever I step inside I can feel its atmosphere of writing and researching and exciting news appearing from Quercus or Furniss Lawton in my email.
I have a large desk, plenty of bookcases and I usually have a noticeboard above my desk which functions as a sort of image board for whatever I’m currently working on. For The Hourglass it was covered in images of 1950s fashions, and of Tenby. I always have my deadline on there too – writ large! My noticeboard serves as inspiration and focus. I don’t have one at the moment because I’m just in between projects but starting to gather images and make visible the themes I’m going to be working with for the twelve months ahead is an exciting and important part of my process.
I’m looking forward to starting my fourth book for Quercus in a month or two. My study’s never as tidy as it should be! I have a second desk behind me, where I chuck all the finance, filing and odds and ends that need attention, so that my main desk stays clear for writing. I don’t always work in my study. If I’m feeling stir-crazy I might take some research books down to the beach, or if it’s very sunny I might take my laptop into the garden, but I’d say my study is my best place to feel centred and focused and get things done.
Tracy’s upcoming book The Hourglass is publishing in paperback on 4th May 2017, which you can pre-order here.