Author Workspace: Shane Kuhn Aug29

Author Workspace: Shane Kuhn

My desk is my world most of the time, so I go to great lengths to cultivate that world in the most inspiring way. My brain responds well to constant stimuli and I try to feed it like an unruly bear that may decide to maul me if faced with an empty picnic basket. Hence, I have three stylized paintings of three of my all time favorite films, a motivational poster using the exploded view of a bullet as a metaphor for creativity, my feather in the cap Boston Globe review for Hostile Takeover, and various objets that symbolize some of the loose screws you might find rattling round my brain. Finally, young Alex is always there to remind me...

Author Work spaces: Robert Masello Aug22

Author Work spaces: Robert Masello

“Okay, I’ll admit it — I actually cleaned up my desk a little bit from this photo. But what stayed the same is the Beatles postcards above my desk (they always cheer me up), the post-it notes all over the computer to remind me of things that I still manage to forget, and the bulletin board on my walls above the desk. I learned, from writing for TV at one time, to summarize each scene and then stick up an index card on the bulletin board. It makes it really easy to see the flow of the narrative at one glance, and to move things around when you have to.” Robert Masello Robert Masello is an award-winning journalist,...

Author Work Space: Jonathan Freedland Aug08

Author Work Space: Jonathan Freedland

Strange to think this is the place where I sit for so many hours. The desk is a long workbench which, looking at it now, I realize encourages bad habits: there’s so much room, it allows me to keep piles of papers that I should probably throw out. Still, you can discover pretty much all you need to know about my writing method from these pictures. The fountain pen and the pad: that’s where I do all my thinking, plotting out a scene or a section in longhand. I don’t know why, but that’s how I’ve always done it  – whether it’s sketching out the argument for a newspaper column or laying out a chapter in a novel. The computer: that’s where the...

Author Work Spaces: Richard Kadrey

Editor’s note: In the time we have been looking at the offices/work spaces of authors, we have seen some interesting stuff. Some very plain, some chocked full of this and that. But I don’t think anything is quite like what we have today. Richard Kadrey, author of the Sandman Slim novels, has been kind enough to give us a glimpse into his own rather unique pad.      I’ll admit it. My office is complete chaos. But I like it that way. I’m one of those people who loses track of everything the moment I try to make my space clean and logical. I think I write that way too. I have a million ideas floating around in the clutter...

Victoria Houston: The Books and Music That Have Influenced My Writing Jul08

Victoria Houston: The Books and Music That Have In...

As a kid, I was a voracious reader and, like so many of us, would check out fifteen to twenty books at a time from our local children’s library – and return them in less than a week. Fully read and savored. It helped that both my parents were dedicated readers. My dad loved Evelyn Waugh, Graham Greene and the outdoors writing of Robert Ruark while my mom inhaled CHEAPER BY THE DOZEN along with Thurber and other humorists – and she subscribed to the Readers Digest Condensed Books so we had plenty of books in our house. Also lots of kids. I was the oldest of eight and there was no better way to tune out the din than curling up in a corner...

Behind the Book: Patti Abbott Jul01

Behind the Book: Patti Abbott

“Why Do You Write Such Dark Stories” by Patti Abbott Whenever I spend an evening with friends familiar with my stories, this question often arises. “You seem like a happy person,” and they usually go on to say. “Was your childhood difficult?” Um, no. And I can’t really give a definitive answer to the question. Is it true even? Are my stories all dark? I paged through a list of stories I’ve published over 15 years and I find I have finished people off in many odd ways: a woman pushed off a boat into a melting ice floe in Alaska; death due to a collapsed ceiling; becoming part of a cello;...