Friday, August 13, 2010

Writing Sanctuaries

The other day, Instapundit linked to this article on Man Caves at The Art of Manliness. A "man cave" is defined as "an area within a house frequented by a man, as a workshop, garage, basement, or den." It's really a sanctuary, where a man goes to be alone and do what he enjoys doing, whether it be tinkering, playing guitar, or writing. It's supposedly a play on "caveman," but I wouldn't be surprised if there was a bit of Batcave (the name of Batman's hidden base) in the etymology.

The man caves in the article include a number of writer's studies, including Ernest Hemingway's, Frederick Douglass's, and, my favorite, Mark Twain's. It got me thinking about my own man cave. My room in my apartment serves as bedroom, work area, and writing studio. It's spacious, if nothing else, but hardly orderly:

This is just one corner, but it tells you most of what you need to know about me. There's an air conditioner, because I live on the third floor and it can get pretty hot, and the curtain is pulled closed over that window. There are the boxes that I haven't gotten around to after a month of living here, and the bookshelf containing just the books I felt that I most needed to unpack. The higher shelf contains books that I've either started reading or plan to soon, while the lower shelf contains the writing reference books I thought that I needed right away. The remaining shelves are filled with junk. Next to the shelves are some filing drawers, containing important papers in the top drawer, and printouts of stories with revision notes from my writing group and myself in the lower drawer. The bed, which is unmade, is set on a frame that was in the apartment when I arrived. Atop it is an inflatable mattress, because I'm too cheap to buy a real one.

This side of the room is where I do all my work. There's my computer and my business class color laser printer. Most importantly is my comfortable desk chair, an absolute necessity considering the number of hours I spend in front of that computer a day. There's a fan nearby, and bottles meant for recycling on the shelf above. Beside them is a black case with my tools. And on the floor is another box I haven't gotten around to unpacking.

Somehow, I doubt I'll be making anyone jealous of my man cave.

UPDATE: Fixed the links, which had somehow gone missing.

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