My writing room is the shed at the end of the garden. I like peace and quiet when I write, so it’s a perfect little retreat to escape to. Just me, my red laptop and my writing buddy, Diggi the dog. The only things I can hear up there are the birds singing and the wind in the trees, unless Diggi is snoring. It took me four years to save up for it, but it was worth every penny and well worth the wait. There’s a little heater which keeps things nice and toasty, lots of cushions and my writing desk, which was a gift from my husband a few years ago.
I’ve never been much of a morning person, so I tend to have breakfast, walk the dog and then head up to the shed when I’m feeling a bit more awake. I’ll deal with emails and admin first, then I can relax and go back to my characters and their lives. I don’t drink tea or coffee, but I do like cup of hot chocolate on a chilly afternoon, especially if it’s in my ‘Go away I’m writing’ mug. If I achieve my daily writing target of 2,000 words, I like to celebrate with a chocolate biscuit or two. When Diggi thinks I’ve written enough, he’ll come and rest his head on my lap, which is his way of telling me to stop writing and take him for another walk.
What you can’t see in the picture are the rows of different coloured index cards. The colours are for different sections of my next novel and each card is a chapter. I like to have them all filled in and know the beginning, middle and end before I start writing a new novel. At wine o’clock, I close the red laptop and have a cheeky glass of red wine with my husband – he’s the only person I’ll talk to about a novel I’m working on. Making up stories and having other people enjoy them is just the best feeling in the world. I’m really lucky to be doing something that I love and my pretty little shed is the perfect place to do it.
Rokitansy by Alice Darwin is out now.