Novel HQ aka The Kitchen Table. Yes, I have an office, but I can't spread my notes and paraphernalia out, because there simply isn't room on the desk. I also prefer writing new scenes in longhand.
Natalie Goldberg talks about 'exercising the writing muscle' and I'm sure that there is a much more creative connection between brain, hand and pen than there is between brain, fingers and computer keyboard. The screen acts as a barrier and automatically imposes the need for order, kicking into the internal editor before the piece is ready for those kinds of restrictions. Does that make sense?
I love the whole process of novel writing, but hate the unwieldiness of it. Compared to a short story, a novel is like holding a three-year-old toddler in your arms as opposed to a six-week-old baby. There is so much more to contain and hold in your head. I realise I need a physical way of visualising the whole. I'm trying to work out the best way of doing this for me. Some novelists use index cards, spread out all over the carpet (or the bed, in one case). Some use Post It notes on a huge board pinned to the wall. I feel as if I need pictures. Quite how that would work, I don't know!
Writing a first novel is a huge learning curve. I now realise that dividing my work into chapters, each chapter having a separate file on the computer, was probably a mistake. I'm now copying and pasting it all into one document. A chore, but a necessary one. You see how easily distracted I am from actually writing?
I may just log off and go and pick up that pen.....