I am not the first, nor the last, writer to develop issues due to the sedentary life style of writing. My issues have been two fold, both related to my back, one in my lower back, the other all the way up to my neck.
These issues cause me pain and discomfort and have made the way I write at home interesting at best (more on that later). I’ve been scolded by both a physical therapist and a chiropractor on how I write.
To explain I need to set up how my home works. My desk is outside my son’s room. Most of the time I am writing while he’s in bed. Or rather, while he’s supposed to be sleeping. Being four-years-old he sometimes plays in bed for hours. Therefore my husband and I stay far away from his room until he is sound asleep.
My desk has my ancient desktop on it. I no longer use that for anything but sentimental value. I do my work on my laptop. Laptops travel, right? So for the past year I have been camping out in my bedroom, on my bed, Indian style and hunched over my laptop.
Is it any wonder I’m having issues? I did wise up and got a raised laptop desk recently, but still has me in bed, which apparently I’m only supposed to be using for sleeping? Who’d a thunk?
The first thing I need to change is where I write. My desk is still off limits due to my son. The dining room table is the next option. But clutter usually collects there and no matter how hard I try, I can’t seem to find comfort at the dining room. Ironically this is where my laptop first rested when she was purchased. I guess that was a habit I should have clung to.
Now I’m going to have the challenge of losing myself in my writing while paying attention to my posture. I tell you, it is easier to write in comfort and I am not looking forward to the transition period. Each time I start to adjust in some small way, I find myself back to old habits, and old comforts.
So if you are a writer, take a moment to think about your writing space. What would a therapist tell you if they could see you in action? If you don’t think it will be flattering it might be time to revise your space.
Or you can be like me, know what you are doing is wrong, and do it anyways. One day I will learn. That day is not today.