Creatively Connected

I have this incredible place to write in my house. We climb up a ladder to this attic hideaway that we call a crow’s nest to withdraw from the noise and activity of the world below. Floor-to-ceiling windows open the room on three sides, beckoning us to look out toward even more inspiring creations.

Some writer’s might think it is the perfect space, and it is. When I’ve spent hours writing in this old IKEA chair on a laptop, though, I know I cannot stay here forever. So, it’s good that my husband and I created the rest of our home to answer the varied needs of our creative family. It’s not a perfect home nor are we a perfect family, but the environment sparks our creativity.

A couple of years ago a regional Minnesota magazine, Lake Country Journal, featured our home on their cover. The photographs and story highlighted the close physical connection of my husband’s architecture firm in a two-story detached studio next to our house.

His creative design solution enhances our family life, allowing work and home to be accessible to one another. He can come and go from our home and his office throughout the day. At dinnertime, our children can wave him in through the window to bring him home from work.

Sadly, though, his firm, Oldham Hirst Design has outgrown their office by our house. They recently moved to a larger renovated office at Franklin Arts Center, an historic building that has been redeveloped into art-related businesses, studios and live/work spaces for artists by Artspace. Already, their creative energy flows as they work around other artists.

I shared a bit in their artistic buzz when we attended a reception this weekend in a gallery at Franklin Arts Center for artists featured in Lake Country Journal magazine. I connected with a friend who works at the magazine, and we talked writing and editing. She prompted me to think beyond my career goals to something I never considered.  I met another creative soul who shared her method of writing any idea out by hand—anywhere—when it comes. I promised not to tell anyone, but she says she wrote some lines of a poem while driving down one of our rural highways on the ripped-out pages of a telephone book from the floor of her car.

Back at our creative house and alone after many years during the day with children at school and Paul gone to a new office, I have the solitude, time and inspiring place to write, write, write. And I do. And I will. Yet, now I know I need more. I need to develop my writer’s space, like they have their art space.

My answer is here, at my website, and in the broader community it offers. Daily writing disciplines me to regularly create. And, my presence here is as much of a creative connection as those windows in my crow’s nest. I need those links to other writers and readers, editors and thinkers, virtually and in real life, to teach me, inspire me, stretch me, and guide me.  Through the broad windows I’ve seen how other writers also write to understand, how to honestly be true to my own creativity, and much more.

What I still need to do, though, is to stop just looking out the windows from my protected writing place. So, I bravely open these windows and call out to more creatives like me, “Is anyone home?”


  1. Sarah
    Oct 13, 2008

    Ok… I’ve decided I would like your house. 😉 I think having a particular place set apart for writing/reading/thinking/dreaming is fantastic.

  2. Ryan
    Oct 13, 2008

    I’m home. Everyday, in fact. All day, too. I don’t really have a “place” where I write, nor a time. And I’m not particularly creative. However, like my wife, I think it’s a fantastic idea. Hi Sarah!

  3. Betsy
    Oct 14, 2008

    I remember looking out that window a fews years back. What a magnificent view! The colors this fall have awakened my soul to the the majesty of God’s creations. I love this creation of yours–this writing and sharing and creating website. Inspiring–as you always have been.

  4. Annie
    Oct 14, 2008

    Hi Teresa, I was thinking just these thoughts today…how I really thrive with a community to share with and have found that for my writing through the web.

    I love your writing spot! I feel relaxed and take deep breaths just looking at it.

  5. TJ
    Oct 14, 2008

    I need to say that out loud to affirm that I spend time at my website doesn’t take away from the time I renew in this other writing spot. The two need to balance–the individual writing time and the group writing time, don’t they?

  6. Camille
    Oct 17, 2008

    I haven’t really thought about myself as a writer for quite awhile because I’m so much in the mom world with a brand new baby and still such young children. Since having kids my creativity has expressed itself in a lullaby and journals for each of my kids; my poetry and writing has taken a backseat. I feel lucky to be able to write my journal and a few entries here and there for the kids. I’ve been reading a memoir by Harry Bernstein, The Invisible Wall and I love how he captures his life as a young child and all the important happenings of the time. When I read memoirs like this I can see myself creating something like this, a memoir, a picture of my life, especially this phase which I love so much. So I’d like to be “home” and share. Reading other’s writing definitely helps inspire me!

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