Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Bernardine Kennedy: shedworker

Writer Bernardine Kennedy's latest novel, ‘Shattered Lives’ is published by Headline and is available now. She blogs at and, as she explains below, she is also a shedworker.
Because my office is halfway down the garden, was delivered in bits, built in a couple of hours and is made of wood I call it a shed or, if I’m feeling pretentious, then a summer house (it has a teeny balcony!) but it really is more than that. It’s a comfortable and cosy haven, a utilitarian office and I love it because it’s my personal space that I don’t have to share with anyone apart from the spiders.

It’s 10’X 8’, the size of a decent spare room, and fully insulated and painted The floor is carpeted and there are curtains and blinds at the windows but this isn’t to be girly, it’s so that I can shut the best and the worst of the British weather out. I’ve kitted it out with a large desk, an ill matching assortment of shelving, drawers and bookcases for my collection of ‘research’ books and news-cuttings and all the bits and bobs that don’t have a place indoors but suit my shed to perfection. It’s nice that I don’t have to explain or apologise for the naff ornaments and rude cards that I like to stick on the walls and notice board.I do have occasional wireless connection to the internet depending on waving trees and bushes but mostly I just go there to think and write away from the distractions of home. It feels more like going out to work and I enjoy that it is detached from the house and it takes a bit of effort for the other inhabitants of the house to get to, especially if the weather is lousy and it requires coat and shoes. So mostly they stay away.

The biggest downside is that it can be hard to work during the summer because the noise of barbeques, lawn-mowers, garden shredders and neighbouring children travels further over fences than through walls and windows. Not to mention the noise of the national obsession with building rooms in the roof. My husband, fed up with my whinging, has bought me some ear-plugs for this summer so we’ll see if that works.

One day I shall have one that is large enough for an inspiration inducing day-bed, an integral kitchen area, a heating/cooling system and maybe even an en-suite but for the moment I’m happy with my shed!
Wednesday's posts are sponsored by The Garden Room Company®, the UK's premier supplier of garden offices and garden rooms. Click here.

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