I used to be neat. Like nothing could be out of place neat. Growing up my mom never had to tell me to clean my room because it was already clean. When I got home from school, I’d do my homework and put it away. My books and folders were always in a perfect stack. College found my rooms the most organized and tidy of my roommates. I’d never leave clothes lying around. Or dishes in the sink. (Oh, and I always had to be sure the doors were locked before I went to sleep.) Married life has proven the same. Luckily my hubby is pretty neat.

Recently, though, something has happened that I can’t explain. There is one spot in my house that is not neat or tidy or clean or organized. Yet, I find it a place that gives me much comfort. I like  the mess. It doesn’t bother me one iota.

Here it is:
My desk!

So this past weekend I went to Barnes & Noble because my friend Rochelle Staab was speaking on a panel with fellow mystery writers Bill Fitzhugh and Steve Blackmore. The moderator was Edward Arno. Mr. Arno said something that I absolutely loved! He’s named his office Peru. He named it Peru so that if someone called for him and he was busy writing his roommate could say that he was in Peru. :D

This leads me back to my office and my messy, but lovely, desk. I’ve decided to name my writing space Maui so that if someone calls and someone in my family answers, they can say I’m in Maui.

Rochelle doesn’t have a name for her writing place, but her favorite spot includes a couch and a fireplace. In honor of her, I’m giving away a signed copy of her debut novel, WHO DO, VOODOO?
Here’s the back cover blurb:

When Liz Cooper’s friend Robin Bloom finds an unusual tarot card tacked to her front door, Liz writes if off as a prank. Robin refuses to ignore the omen–her late husband drew the same card, the Three of Swords, in a reading the night before he was killed in a car accident. As more cards and darker threats appear, Liz realizes someone very dangerous is upping the ante…

Liz turns to her brother’s ex-college roommate, occult expert Nick Garfield. As Nick leads her into the voodoo community to locate the origin of the deck, she can’t ignore their attraction to each other. Then, a woman is found murdered and Robin becomes the prime suspect. Determined to clear her friend, Liz teams with Nick to unravel otherworldly secrets and seek help from beyond–or risk being outwitted by a cunning killer…

Leave me a comment letting me know what your desk (or favorite space) looks like and if you have a name for it, and you’re entered to win the book. I’ll announce the winner next Tuesday, January 31st.



Posted January 24, 2012 by Robin Bielman in Books, Favorite Authors, Giveaway, Ramblings / 15 Comments

15 responses to “Happy Hodgepodge (and a giveaway!)

  1. I love this post, and the idea of naming my office space. There was a wooden sign hanging on my guest room door knob, “I’m in Paris, come back later.” I went down the hall, grabbed it, hung it in the office and now can imagine I’m in Paris. : )

    I’ve already read, and loved, Who Do Voodoo, so don’t add my name to the drawing.

  2. Hi Robin! You call that messy? ha! I’ll see you and I’ll raise you a half dozen. Amazingly, I can find almost everything I need. It’s when I clean things up items go missing.

    I’ll just call my office Hell – so when someone calls my husband can say – she’s gone to hell. :-P 8-) :chic:

  3. Oh, I amd SO the Oscar to your Felix. Messy doesn’t bother me @ all. I mean, don’t get me wrong. I enjoy being in a clean, orderly environment but if it’s not…this too shall pass. Since I write in my bedroom most of the time, my story board’s beside my bed on the wall. And since I work out of my car, yeah, that’s a mess too. SO, I guess for me, my office is EVERYWHERE. I suppose if I could name its massivity, I’d call it Nebraska ;)

  4. Beth

    I love that-Maui. Very fitting as it’s full of fond memories. I know we’d all be ready to go there for real in a heartbeat. Keep up your wonderful work! Love, Mom :-))

  5. Cheryl S.

    Umm, I share the desk with our desktop computer with my two teenagers, and it is always a mess but I actually cleaned it off today. I found a couple pair of my daughter’s earrings, a stack of my son’s trading cards, a couple packs of gum and two of my daughter’s holiday cards still in envelopes (and $40 still tucked inside). One of the cards was from Christmas 2010! I don’t know what I could name our desk – Siberia, maybe?

  6. Robin

    Hi, Janie! Hope you’re happily writing in Mexico!

    Hi, Robena! I was thisclose to choosing Paris! But I haven’t been there yet and well, when I say I’m in Paris I really want to be IN Paris.

  7. Robin

    LOL, Lynne! You crack me up! Hell is a great name for your messy writing space! ;) (Where great works of fiction are born, btw!)

    Hi, Tuere! Thanks so much for stopping by! It sounds to me like you have an orderly mess. :) Happy writing and working in Nebraska!

    Mom! I love that you’re here! Thanks for your support! And Maui is so special in large part because of you! xoxo

  8. Robin

    Hi, Cheryl! Oh, I feel for you! I’ve got two teenagers too and they’ve got lots of “things” on their desks too! I love everything you found – did you chew some gum and then go shopping? Have fun in Siberia!

  9. Peru and Maui, I love it! Perhaps I should name my desk Never-Neverland, because although I frequently vow to clean it off… It contains an outline for my WIP, a thick layer of bills to be filed, a stapler I primarily use as a paperweight, some Christmas stockings I missed storing away on the first post-holiday pass, but haven’t dragged out the box to actually put away yet, hand lotion, a sandal with a strap I intend to glue as soon as I figure out which glue would work best, the usual pens. I think there might be some scratch paper here, too. :-P Would love to win a copy of Rochelle’s book, I hear it’s terrific.

  10. Robin

    LOL, Beverly! I just noticed a Christmas decoration I’d forgotten to put away too! Not on my desk, but in plain site! And it took me 3 weeks to realize it! So besides being more messy, I’m less observant.

    p.s. I’d use a glue gun. :)

  11. I love the idea of naming your desk area! Of course, the first place that came to mind was “The bathroom”, but that joke would get old fast. Maybe “The library”. That makes me sound busy and studious and smart. Though if the library’s in Maui or Peru, so much the better.

    I love your messy desk, too! I think a good mess is a sign of creativity. Creativity is messy, after all.

    As for where I write, it’s everywhere – and never at a desk. That’s why I went crazy when my laptop was gone and I was confined to a desktop. Right now I’m in an armchair in our family room with my feet up, but the bed or living room couch will work just as well, and so does our local coffee shop and my favorite chair in the library.

  12. Robin

    ROFL, Caryn! The bathroom? That never occurred to me. Just sayin’. I didn’t realize you don’t like to write at a desk. I think lots of writers are that way. For me, I feel like I’m much more productive when I’m in Maui! :D

  13. My desk is a disaster. Actually, the whole office is a collection of little bits of paper and large piles of books. BIG MESS!! I do not, however, have a name for it yet. (Perhaps it should be whatever “big mess” is when translated into French or Italian… :) )

    Also, YAY to Rochelle!! Thrilled for her about the release of her debut novel!

  14. Nope! No desk for me. I write better when I’m comfortable. I can see how being at a desk would make the writing feel more official, though, and make it easier to keep everything organized. Plus you don’t have to contend with cats (or, in your case, a puppy) trying to sit on your chest and block your view.

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