USA Today bestselling author, Jamie K. Schmidt, writes erotic contemporary love stories and paranormal romances. Her Club Inferno series from Random House’s Loveswept line has hit both the Amazon and Barnes & Noble top one hundred lists. She has two other series with Loveswept: Hawaii Heat, in which the first book Life’s A Beach will be out in January 2016, and The Sentinels of Babylon, about members of vigilante Motorcycle Club and their old ladies, which is scheduled for summer 2016. Her dragon paranormal romance series from Entangled Publishing, has been called “fun and quirky” and “endearing.” Partnered with New York Times bestselling author and former porn actress, Jenna Jameson, Jamie’s hardcover debut, SPICE, continues Jenna’s FATE trilogy.
An avid knitter and jewelry maker, Jamie is never bored. She can often be found with a mug of tea on the computer flanked by her little dogs & fluffy white cat. You can follow her on twitter at @Jamiekswriter or on her author page on Facebook. When she’s not writing or crafting, Jamie loves playing games, everything from board games to strategy card games, console and online MMORPGs.
Getting in the Mood: Outfitting the Writing Cave
Am I the only one who thinks the Levenger’s catalog is akin to the big Sears Christmas wish book from many years ago? I could sit and drool at all the pretty notebooks and pens for hours. I mean let’s face it, even if you do most of your writing on a computer what writer wouldn’t want a spiffy leather bound portfolio and a funky fountain pen? But I’m on a bit of a budget as I strive to put together what Virginia Wolfe called “a room of her own” so I can write fiction. Truthfully, it’s a corner of a room that I share with my husband but we’ve been married for seventeen years so I’ve had a lot of practice of ignoring him when I need to write. So while it’s not technically a room of my own, it’s close enough.
The first thing equipping my author area is a desk. It’s a corner unit that I picked up from IKEA. The next is a comfy chair that I spent more than I wanted to on at Staples, but since my butt will be in it for long stretches of time, I figured it was worth it to be comfortable. Then there is my laptop and collection of thumb drives. I have a bunch of thumb drives because I’m paranoid that I’m going to lose one. So my back up files have back up files.
That’s the bare minimum of my office space. But it’s a little stark and sterile, even after I grab a tall glass of lemonade and a mug of tea. I couldn’t decide if I wanted hot or cold. Sometimes writing is like that too and I have to try both out before I’m satisfied. I write erotica under my pen name Lissa Trevor and contemporary romance under Jamie K. Schmidt. So I need to feed both sides of my muse.
Music helps. I hooked up Pandora radio and put on my headset, but my eyes kept straying to the blank wall. I needed some inspiration. Road trip time! I got into my car and drove to AC Moore. Michaels or Hobby Lobby would have worked too. All three of them have some inexpensive matted pictures guaranteed to catch the eye and inspire creativity. I picked up a few that made my imagination soar just looking at them.
On the way home, I made another stop at Staples because office supplies are my porn. I really dig colored paperclips and post-it notes with pithy sayings on them. Not to mention there are all sorts of things there to buy that you can put on your desk. I’m particularly fond of the “WTF?” stamp and the automated button that when you press it says “NO!” in several voices. There’s also one that says “BULL*%$#” too. I have a use for all three of these things in my writing and daily life. And the genius who decided that Staples should have a snack center by the registers should be given a promotion. So loaded down with paper, pens, gummy worms – you know, the essentials, I returned home to finish up my writing place.
I was trying to think what else I would need to really pimp my office. A bouquet of flowers would be nice – until they started to die. Then that would throw the feng shui of the room right off. Desk toys or figurines would add a little style, but also a lot of clutter. I have a hard time with clutter. For most of the week my dining room table is a horizontal filing cabinet.
I wanted something different. Something that said this was uniquely my space. A space for writing and productivity. A friend of mine has a treadmill desk. I really want to try that one day. I’m afraid, though, that with my lack of coordination, I’d wind up hurting myself.
I decided I probably should stick with the plain Jane office for the moment until inspiration hits. Maybe I’d make a vase with knitting needles in it or something crafty. When it was word time, I put on the music and got my butt in the chair. I was drinking my tea with a Twizzler straw (don’t judge), and staring at the pictures of Paris on the wall while tapping my purple gel pen.
All of a sudden, the cat launched herself onto the keyboard. I picked her up and put her down. She comes back, only this time, she wound around to the back of the laptop and stared at me over the screen.
This would be different. Apparently, I have a writing buddy.
I ignored her until she started to gnaw on the corner of the laptop. Wheeling over a table, I put a fluffy towel on top, and sprinkled a little catnip to interest her. So now I’m sugared up. The cat is stoned and the blank page is a little less daunting.
What do you have in your writing cave or office?