Last day in the bunker; looking forward, looking back, looking side-ways

Last day in the bunker; looking forward, looking back, looking side-ways

Today is my last day in “the bunker”—my lovely basement office in our Ontario home. I have another lovely office awaiting in Mexico, but this one (shown above) is my favourite, and I always feel a little sad leaving.

It’s said that “home is where your books are,” and that makes this place home: we’ve books everywhere here.

As soon as I finish this post, I will close the door on this office  until next spring. I’ve tidied it well this year.

On the 1st of November, a little jet-lagged and travel weary, I will unpack my lovely office in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico.

SMA office

As soon as I have my printer up and running, I will print out THE GAME OF HOPE (working title of The Next Novel). I’ve been thinking about it a lot and am ready to plunge into the next draft.

Other things going on:

I’ve enrolled in Witches, Plagues, and War, a free on-line course in Historical Fiction, offered through  amazing There are over 15,000 enrolled worldwide. Mind-boggling.

But the main thing is the quality: the course is fantastic. I’m learning and loving it.

Check out all the other Coursera offerings: are they not amazing? I want to drop out and go to school! I want to work toward that long-ago impossible dream of getting a PhD in Comparative Lit!

Maybe when I’m 80 …

Good-bye Bunker

Good-bye Bunker

Today is my last day in my northern office — affectionately called The Bunker. I love the office I’ll be moving to in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, but my Bunker in rural Ontario, overlooking fields and a maple forest, is my favourite writing space, and it’s always hard to leave. Not only is it lovely and cosy and quiet, but this is where my books are, this is the core of my research library.

Your home is where your books are, someone said, and I believe that to be true.

Books everywhere!

Right now, the desk in the photo is covered with stacks of books: books to be considered, books without a place on my shelves. (Another problem, that!) Which books should I take with me? What research books am I going to need in the six months ahead? This is not a question that can be answered easily … at least not by me.

With so little time left, I’ll aim to simply tidy today, leaving post-it notes on all the various piles.

I can’t take my bulletin board, alas
On the wall in front of the desk I have a framed print, a bulletin board and a Edward Gorey calendar. The bulletin board has inspiring images and quotes on it: “Want ? Obstacle ? Action,” for example.

Images of creativity

Two of the images on the bulletin board are especially dear to me. One, of men carving up blocks of stone, is evocative of the heavy lifting of the revision process.

The other image is one I haven’t been able to identify. (If you can identify it, I’d be eternally grateful!) It’s of two people, possibly a man and a woman, floating on a platform on a lake, half-emmersed in water. This image captures, for me, the feeling of the creative process, of immersion in unconscious.

The two images?one evocative of the unconscious, the other of the conscious, I think?work together in any act of creation.

Should I take my Edward Gorey calendar? I’ve loved it so! No: I’ll fast-forward through November and December, and in the Spring, on return, I’ll put it in my keeper box. Ironically, I just peeked at the caption for November:

It would carry off objects of which it grew fond, 

And protect them by dropping them into the pond.

Construction image: Granite for monuments (for future monuments), 1939. Lithograph by Louis Lozowick.

Floating image: unknown to me. If you know, please write.