Blaugust Promptapalooza 2020 is this crazy year’s crazy twist on the August blogging challenge cooked up by Belghast over on Tales of the Aggronaut. Instead of writing every day, a whole bunch of us have committed to being “prompt-bearers”, and today it’s my turn!
Tell us about your physical creative space, and how it influences your content creation.Promptapalooza (August 10th, 2020)
I’m going to ‘fess up here. I wanted to throw this prompt back. I almost resented it – obviously, Bel doesn’t know anything about my creative space and the prompts were distributed randomly. I wasn’t being called out, but it sure felt that way for a hot minute. But I realized the fact that I reacted to it so strongly is exactly why I should write about it.
Because of this, I’m going to tell you now that tomorrow’s prompt will be presented by SDWeasel over at Unidentified Signal Source, in case you don’t make it all the way to the end.
Apologies in advance for my lack of pictures on this one. This is going to be hard to write, possibly hard to read, and I just don’t feel like I can illustrate it for you as well.
I really don’t feel like I have a “creative space”. I have a space where, sometimes, somehow, almost in spite of myself, I manage to write. My desk is small and cramped. My computer and all of its peripherals have seen better days. The floor in here isn’t level, so I am forever listing slightly to the left, and my chair actually partially blocks the access to the hallway leading to the other side of the house.
To top it off, it’s never quiet here. There’s no door I can close. I’m frequently trying to block out the television, a barking dog, half a conversation taking place on Discord, or all of the above. I do have a headset (and use it when I really need to), but extended use tends to give me a headache, and I’m clueless about how to find something more suitable.
Basically, my creative space is everything I don’t want it to be. But I make it work because the alternative – giving this up until I can get my space in order – is untenable.
I’ve said it before – I don’t really write here to build a following. In fact, self-promotion past an automated Tweet and an occasional link drop on a Discord channel or Facebook group would likely be the end of what I’m doing. No, as much I as love the interaction of blogging when it comes, it’s not why I do it.
For me, writing here about whatever strikes my fancy is structure and purpose and one of the few things I do for my own satisfaction, and I’m not ready to give that up.
Sadly, this is sort of a recurring theme for me. When we moved into the apartment we lived in before this house, I was determined to prioritize making a “writing nook” for myself. It was full of books that I loved, and good intentions. However, I was still learning how to balance a job, domestic responsibilities, and adjusting expectations due to a chronic illness, and instead of being a source of solace, it ended up being a constant reminder of my failure to prioritize creativity.
I realize now I’m going kind of far off prompt, but it’s a recurring theme for me. There’s always something more important to do, something else that space needs to be set aside for, and I couldn’t possibly make that kind of commitment.
We live in an old, poorly maintained home, and are trying to make it into a space that works for us – slowly, with limited funds, and even more limited DIY-ability. Both my husband and I struggle with different disabilities, and there are days that we can only manage the bare minimum as far as housework goes. The dogs get taken care of, and we make sure we eat something. On the better days, we struggle to get caught up, and it’s rare that we have the energy and the finances required for the bigger projects we want to tackle.
We are about four and half years behind on our five year plan, and every time we manage to squirrel away some savings, something critical breaks. This year, the savings account is going to get emptied out to replace the heating system. We do have a room, currently being used for storage, which is allocated to be my quiet place, but it basically needs to be gutted first, and that particular project is going to take a huge allotment of energy, so it keeps getting put off.
At this point, I cannot fathom just … waiting for the right type of space to create. I’ve hit a point in my life where I feel better about making do than not making anything. I may not have a creative space that speaks to me for another five years, but that doesn’t mean I should neglect the part of me who wants to write, and craft, and paint, and draw. Right now, I can’t dedicate space in my home, but I absolutely must dedicate space in my life.
I know this whole post is pretty far outside what I normally write about, and for those of you who made it this far, I have a small reward in the form of a picture of my adorable dogs. They’re also not really into the idea of me having a quiet space to make things, but they’re fantastic for my mental health, so we’ll allow it.