“That is a big damn chair,” my boyfriend said as he gazed at me, sprawled over the armrests of my new chair. And I lost it — I burst into laughter. Because when these absurd situations happen, you just have to laugh, right? Besides, the look on his face was priceless. “Are you sure you didn’t buy a couch?”
“Well, it looked smaller in the store,” I managed to say between giggling breaths. “It is a little large, isn’t it?”
A little large was an understatement. It had, in fact, devoured a good chunk of the bedroom.
“Out of all the chairs in Tartu . . .” But I was so happy about it that he didn’t have the heart to nag me too much. To be honest, he started to laugh, too.
“At least it’s green,” I said. Green is our favorite color. “And the cats seem to like it.” Our cats make all the household decisions, it seems.
This week has been a busy one. Monday I started the move from my cozy attic apartment into my new home on the other side of town. I had reservations about this move — I’m like a cat in that sense, when it comes to uprooting from a place I actually like — because the other apartment suited me. The skylights, the low-angled ceiling (I’m only 5’2, so I fit), the location. But this new apartment has its merits, too. For one, it has a wood burning stove for heating. Secondly, it has a lot more space. And finally, as a way to compromise with me, my boyfriend agreed that I could purchase a reading/writing chair for the bedroom.
He may regret saying that, now.
The bedroom actually has a fantastic location for a desk right next to the chimney, so it would be warm in the winter. But I am one of those writers who cannot work at a desk. In fact, other than a loaned dorm room desk, I have never even had one.
When I was a pre-teen/teenager, I didn’t like using furniture for writing. (I have no idea why.) Instead, I would sit on the carpet beneath my bedroom window and write. My stack of writings was a pile on the floor. Once I got a laptop, I moved downstairs so that I could plug into the internet (no wifi then), found a spot in a corner between the couch and the wall, and sat, as always, on the floor.
My habits, to be honest, never really changed much. Once I moved to college, I invested in a floor chair. I used a stack of notebooks as a mouse pad and did all my work, once again, on the floor. I even played World of Warcraft on the floor (yes, I’m a gamer). And, as previously mentioned, though I did have a desk, I mostly used it as a storage closet.
When I escaped the dorms and moved into my own apartment, I finally started using the couch as my workspace. After that, since most of the places I’ve lived in Europe have had hard floors (and I didn’t have the good fortune to bring my floor chair along), I’ve given up the practice of sitting on it, but depending on where I’m living and what furniture is available to me, I’ve continued the practice of writing anywhere but a desk.
So, now that I’m in an apartment that has the space, I went out four days ago on my mission to find the ideal chair: cat-resistant, comfortable armrests that could fit my laptop, big enough that I can sit in one of my funny writing positions.
I came away like a proud new parent. I had found it. The chair. My chair.
As I’m writing this, both cats sit next to me with room to spare — one is actually drooling, I think. I have a cup of coffee sitting on one of the armrests (I’ll try not to spill it). Above me shines one of the two ideally placed wall lamps. To the right is my bookcase. I even managed to fit my Estonian rug (also green) in the narrow space between bookshelf and bed — just in front of the door. In short, I’ve managed to make a writing nest, which is an essential component for me as a writer.
An essential component, I think, for any writer.
So, on that note, I’m curious about where you all prefer to work: on the floor, a desk, tables, chairs? Do you prefer to go somewhere outside the house to write? Does it actually matter to you?
Please let me know in the comments!