A Neat and Tidy Desk-The Sign of a Disorganized Mind

It is my turn to begin the Query Tracker blog chain topic this time, so I thought I’d lighten it up a little and shift the emphasis from the writing itself to the personal habits of the writers.  Don’t fear, fellow QT chain gang members; I’m not asking for embarrassing habits here, just insight into how you work and who you are (description of embarrassing habits welcomed, though).

The previous topic about story world creation was begun and ended by H.L. Dyer .  The other members of the QT Blog Chain Gang can be found in the links on the right.  

My topic question for my fellow QT Bloggers is:

What kind of quirky habits or rituals do you have regarding your writing?

(or regarding anything else, if that is more fun.)  

Neatness. I must have neatness. My house can be a wreck, but the area in which I write must be tidy. Everything must be in place and clean.  I firmly believe that this is a way of compensating for my total lack of mental organization.  Control what you can.  

I have a hand washing fetish where my computers are concerned.  No one can touch then unless they wash their hands first.  This comes from enduring all manner of unidentifiable gook on the keyboard and mouse deposited by small children.  

I have a fun writing buddy. Yep. Being alone for hours on end for days at a time with no break will make one a little nutty. A buddy to talk to helps. This is Beeyaaa. (2 e’s and 3 a’s, thank you.) My girls put him in my office to keep me company. Now, I’m so attached, I have to have him around. It has gotten so ridiculous, I even move him with me when I change computers.

It is good to have a friend like Beeyaaa, who is so experienced and worldly. Here are some pictures from Beeyaaa’s soon to be published biography, FROM FLOCK TO FABULOUS. 

Beeyaaa was born of humble beginnings-just one of the flock.

He worked his way through college as an emissary for the World Peace Project.

Beeyaa went on to become an astronaut and performed the first helmetless lunar space walk.

His most recent job is researching for Mary’s books.  

When not researching or performing his essential duties as Super Beeyaaa…

Beeyaaa can be found reading a romance novel on the beach at sunset.

I keep antique statues of Fox and Welsh Terriers on my desk to keep me company when I am apart from my dogs while working in the study. My dogs keep my feet warm in person when I write at my desk in the kitchen.

I write entirely from home or the river house.  I do not like to work in public places like Starbucks because I get so into it, I lose all track of time when I write. I feel vulnerable writing in public. Naked.  (I make stupid faces and talk to myself and my characters and would probably be asked to leave anyway, so it is just as well.)

Must have coffee in order to write.

And music.  I sometimes play the same song or set of songs over and over.  Beeyaaa doesn’t seem to mind, but it drives my family nuts.

The next writer in the blog chain on this highly academic and essential topic is Kate Quinn.

Explore posts in the same categories: QueryTracker Chain, The Writing Process

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19 Comments on “A Neat and Tidy Desk-The Sign of a Disorganized Mind”

  1. Sandra Says:

    I like Beeyaaa! He reminds me of Oscar the Orca, whom you’ll meet in my blog entry.

  2. I love Beeyaaa!!! I am going to be the first, but certainly not the last – to put in an official request for Beeyaaa to have his own blog… or at the very least future guest entries on yours chronicling his continuing adventures.

    He also reminds me of my favorite stuffed animal from when I was little – it was a green lamb who was one of the Care Bear Cousins.

  3. See ya, wouldn’t want to Beeyaaa…wait, yes I would — you have an AGENT!!!

    I have the same hand washing rule for my computer Mary, especially when it comes to my son…Mr. Always-Into-Food.

    An imaginative post, love it. I do need future updates on Beeyaaa’s exceptional life.


  4. Michelle Says:

    Love Beeyaaa!! I have some of the same habits as you 😀 Although I am more extreme with the handwashing thing – they don’t have to wash their hands because no one is allowed to touch my computer except (occasionally) my husband 😀 Of course, my kids are too young to need to touch it right now. Things may change as they get older 🙂 I am also a neat nut. I can’t think when the house is cluttered. My immediate vicinity, at the very least, has to be cleaned, but even then, my mind will wander to the rest of the dirty house.

    Great topic!! This will be fun 😀

  5. Elana Says:

    Wow, Mary, this is so awesome. Beeyaaa is so cute, I love the pictures. Habits of writing? Man, you’re trying to make me think again. Great topic, it’ll be interesting to see the responses of our creative group! 😀

  6. H. L. Dyer Says:

    I seriously love you.

    What a great topic and fun post!

    I don’t know if I’m quirky enough to be entertaining. *snort*

  7. Woot! I love this topic! I used to be way worse than I am with my happy little compulsions but never fear, there’s still plenty to blog about!

  8. Carolyn Says:

    I think Beeyaaa stole the post. But how could he not? He’s been to the MOON. (Totally jealous.)

    This is going to be a tough act to follow!

    Major cheers for such a great topic & post!

  9. Sandy Says:

    lol That’s too funny about the handwashing thing. I probably should do that, but my office is kind of a mess right now. I’m a weird sort of perfectionist when it comes to cleaning and organizing. If I can’t get something absolutely perfect, I don’t even try. Sad, but true. Thank God that doesn’t bleed (too much) over into writing.

    Fun post.

  10. Terri Rainer Says:


    Um, do you also like fruit-cake, by chance?

    The more I learn about you, the more I like! It’s always great to know that you are definitely NOT the only weirdo in the bunch, although I think you have me way beat on the creativity!

    🙂 Terri

    PS I talk to myself way too much too!

  11. […] will find me back on the Chain Gang. So, stop in and have a look-see. Mary started this chain on quirks if you want to start reading from the […]

  12. How fabulous that your kids gave you a writing buddy. Now I’m thinking that I ought to get my desk area cleaned up before my turn on the chain comes along. 🙂

  13. […] So, we work through the chain posting one-by-one with the same general focus, and then, we repeat the process with a new topic for discussion. Check out the previous post at Sandra’s blog and the next post will be published at Elana’s blog within the next couple of days. If you would like to read this topic from the beginning, please see Mary’s blog. […]

  14. […] Luckily, this post can be a two-for, cuz I’m Deeply Smitten with the current Blog Chain topic, started by Mary Lindsey: […]

  15. Suzette Saxton Says:

    Thanks for the peek into the mind of a writing wizard! Beeyaaa is the best.

  16. […] End of Quirkiness I began the QT Blog Chain this last round with a topic designed to bring out the humor and humanity in my writer friends. It worked! The links to the […]

  17. […] at Mary Lindsey’s Blog ~ Mary Lindsey rocks especially hard here and […]

  18. […] which undoubtedly comes with a sizable money award *wink*, was attributed to my posts here and here, which happen to be my favorites too! […]

  19. Alek Says:

    Hi. Good site.

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