Last Cave on the Left

20160628_184654Now that the kids and grandkids have moved out and into their own beautiful house, the hubby and I have decided it’s time to remodel/redecorate. Two different words, two different meanings, two different opinions.

We now have two empty bedrooms upstairs where my boys used to live. Actually one lived upstairs, one downstairs. But I drift. I turned the second upstairs bedroom into a library. It was sweet. Large window that looked out over the yard and towards the woods, oak shelves, books galore, art, kids artwork, pictures in antique frames. Stenciling on the upper wall, closet doors removed and closet tured into a computer nook.

It was awesome.

The library was turned into my grandkids’ room while they lived here. Now the room is available again. Yet hubby says this time, no library. The rooms are going to become bedrooms for our wonderful, energetic, perfect grandkids when they come to visit.  I can still have a library, but it will be downstairs in the far corner bedroom.

I might as well be arranging my library in Siberia.

I took a picture this evening of my messed up downstairs, which is in the process of being rearranged, decluttered, and we-don’t-know-yet. And way in the corner is the library-to-be. The window is actually a window well, the fuse box is behind the closet door, we don’t have a real ceiling (although I’ve been promised that I will get one), and it’s the farthest point in the house from the bathroom. Ever see Last House on the Left?

I suppose in some ways it’s an ideal writing arena. Far away from confusion and noise, a haven for privacy, an off-the-way place to get absorbed in my books and writing. I can fill the room with my shelves, books, art, kids art, a writing table and/or comfy sofa and/or oversized chair, some great indirect lighting, and maybe a faux bearskin rug on the floor.

The problem is that I’m an unconventional writer. Predictable, but unconventional.

Most time I’m sitting on my sofa with my laptop, looking out the window, listening to music, sometimes a boring movie in the background, often in silence, the frig, bathroom, and food pantry within a few steps. From this vantage point I can keep an eye on the dogs (one who dives into the cat food dish for a quick snack, the other who knows how to twirl the corner kitchen cabinet and eat the bread), change the laundry, water the plants, make chocolate milk, and stack my research books on the other end of the sofa along with my phone, TV flipper, and two cats.

You might think that sounds like I’m not a serious writer.

Au contraire.

No one loves writing more than me. No one wants to touch the minds and souls and funny bone of others more than me. And no one wants to succeed more than me.

I think it’s just that my adult-onset A.D.D. doesn’t allow for sitting still for too long a period of time. My job during the day is hard enough, because I work on a computer all day. So at night, multi-tasking is the only way I get anything done.

The truth of the matter is I didn’t use the fancy schmancy library like a library should have been used. Sometimes I’d just go and sit in there, run my fingers along the books, polish the glass and the photos and the little doodads my kids made for me. I’d sit on the floor and go through my high school year books or pictures in albums or coffee table sized books on faeries or dragons. The soft light from the big window turned the room into a slightly peach fuzz, along with my dreams.

But it was never a writer’s room.

I know I will be able to add my magic to the dungeon downstairs — a couple of great lamps, a comfy settee, lots of bookshelves and some new art I’ll have to paint and an old area rug that’s seen better days. I will still sit down there and go through my high school year books and pictures of the B&B I used to own and read the books my kids wrote when they were in 1st grade and the library will come alive again.

But I will still sit on my sofa and do my most favorite thing.



6 thoughts on “Last Cave on the Left

  1. Oh I so do love your response! I know atmosphere is important to writing, but reality is important too. Rather me in the ‘last house/bedroom on the left’ than my grandkids. The sofa works just fine. Thanks for being a part of my reality!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I can so relate to your story! When we moved into this house, I set up a room for writing, complete with a beautiful roll top desk. We put our old queen sized bed in the other extra bedroom. It worked great, until the first grandchild came along. Then, I had to eventually make room for a single bed. It was tight, but worked. When Addi came along, we put the queen bed into the little room and put the twin bed, a roll out bed, and a smaller writing desk, file, and computer desk into that room. The rooms got switched out again when I wanted the guest room to be more spacious . So now, I have bunk beds along one wall and the desk, etc. under the window in the smaller room. One can’t get a chair over to the file cabinet or ink jet printer. My writing and art supplies are stored “around” that area and it isn’t at all conducive to writing. I do mine at the kitchen table, in the living room, and out on the porch when the weather is accommodating. When we move to Stevens Point next year, I am hoping to again have an art room/office, but I guess we’ll just have to see.

    Good luck with your project, my friend. I just know that it will be your own personal little fort, whether or not you write in it. And, don’t we all need our own little fort now and then, if nothing else just to be inspired?


  3. You are so right. And since I’ll probably be in this house until forever, I might as well consider remodeling/redecorating as a kind of “move” to a different house. But because my “library” will be downstairs in the last house/room on the left, a world I rarely enter, I hope I don’t forget about it!


  4. I turned 63 today. On the way to work, I was thinking about all of the houses/apartments I have occupied over the years and the events in my life that required a change of address. Some were by choice, some by necessity. Some exciting changes, like my first apartment following graduation or the first apartment after getting married. The first house complete with three extra bedrooms to be occupied by three children. Then, years later, a divorce, another apartment, followed by another house. New furniture, remodeling, happiness, joy, sadness tears. Life within the walls of a man made structure.

    We shape our houses like we shape our lives. We adjust as needed, create new to replace the old, and set the stage for future generations. Libraries come and go. The memories we create in those libraries live on.

    Liked by 1 person

Share Your Thoughts!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.