Construction report 2011: Writing Office Progress

My wife and I bought our first house in 2008. After 15 years of renting. It is very likely to be our last. A rambler in need of substantial fixing up, it has the requisite luxuries we wanted when we moved from Washington State: air conditioning, two wood-burning fireplaces, and a quaint kidney-shaped in-ground swimming pool, which we’re enjoying for the first summer in 2011. We’re also making substantial progress on my writing office in the basement — the space for which has been designated since the beginning. Even if getting it remodeled is a project of many years.

Below are some clickable photos of the office as it looked when we first moved in, in 2008. Observe the lovely vintage wood paneling…

…which I happily ripped out. Along with both of the old, single-pane windows. And the studding for the old, too-small closet. We had the north window space enlarged, new double-pane insulated vinyl windows put in, along with an actual window well. Then, in 2009, we set to work studding the exterior — there had been none before, nor insulation either — among other things.

Come 2011, and we’re finally getting the drywall up, after previously doing lights and insulation in 2010.

Through the end of July and into August, my wife and I will be mudding, taping, and sanding the drywall, prior to application of primer and latex satin paint. We’ve got the flooring and closet accoutrement ready to go as well, so after a long wait, it seems we’re poised to finally get the office to a usable state — including a nice new desk from Ikea.

Of course, it’s easier to justify spending time and money on the writing office, now that the office can actually pay for itself. In 2008 and 2009, being a paid author was still just a pipe dream. Now? Well, today I collected two checks — for my most recent Analog sale, and a reprint for a previous Analog story from late last year. Such events aren’t uncommon, and my income spreadsheet tells me I’ve done remarkably well through the first half of the year.

It’s going to be easier once I can sit in that office, however. A space of my own, after living like a hobo for the last 8 years — forever carting everything important around in various Army backpacks, including the all-important laptop, on which every lick of fiction gets written. I will have drawers — drawers! — and a desk — a desk! — and I can close the door — the door! — which will be my signal to the world that I am busy and not to be disturbed. Because, you know, this writing thing is making money for the household budget. Glorious.


7 thoughts on “Construction report 2011: Writing Office Progress

  1. Ah, you lucky bastard. A place of your own to write in. A place of solitude and perhaps silence if you like. A room with no distractions other than those you chose to bring in there with you.

    Somedays, as much as I hated the Signal Corps, I really miss the solitude of a twelve hour shift in the back of an MSE Rig.

    S. F. Murphy
    On the Outer Marches

  2. I can’t wait, dude! And I thank my wife every day for letting us — as a middle-income household — spend our money in such a fashion. I keep telling her it’s an investment that will yield dividends. On today’s like today, when the check(s) are literally in our mail box, I think she has an easier time believing that. (grin)

  3. Looks good, Brad! Any plans to hang a corkboard or whiteboard on the walls? When my wife and I moved to our new digs, first thing I did was hang a 4×6 corkboard in my office. It’s very useful for writing and planning and so forth. Enjoy the dedicated space!

  4. Brad,

    Read “The Chaplain’s Assistant” a couple days ago. Phenomenal stuff, man. Stylish writing, insightful storytelling…and like “Outbound,” shows your apparent penchant for perfect, satisfying endings.

    Will have to subscribe to the Kindle version of Analog or something to get “The Bullfrog Radio Astronomy Project,” along with Alastair’s latest story. You lucky, lucky dudes! 🙂

  5. Thanks Alex! That was a Kris Rusch and Dean Smith workshop story. My second sale from the secon KR & DW workshop — “Ray of Light” — comes out in the December issue. I am pleased you enjoyed the story. More on the way!

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