TWN WWW 300

 

Every Wednesday, I feature a writer and his/her workspace.  My aim is to get to know fellow writers better through their workspace and writing habits, and have them  share some of their writing wisdom here.

Today, I am most eager to welcome Jennifer Pitts, fellow SCBWI member and author of that fun blog Scribbles from Jenn 

Welcome, Jenn!

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Tell us a little bit about yourself. What do you do for a living? What genre do you love to write? What are some of your hobbies or interests? Do you have a hidden talent?
jenn photo

Writer Jennifer S. Pitts

After careers as a waitress, shoe buyer, teacher, and principal, I finally settled on Writing Mom, both of which are harder than any of the other careers I’ve held, mostly because in those other careers the workday came to an end. In my current career… let’s just say I’m on call 24/7. I love cruising! It doesn’t have to be any specific destination, just put me on a large ship, in a big body of water, with all the food you can eat, and I’m happy. Our family also enjoys RV’ing. It fulfills my husband’s desire to bond with the outdoors while allowing me to have most of the comforts of home. Thanks to him, our family has visited most of the national parks in Arizona, California, Utah, and Wyoming. I actually blogged the A-Z Challenge 2012 on some of our RV and Cruising destinations. 

I have am currently on the sixth, and hopefully, final draft of my middle grade fiction book. I thought it would be done much sooner, but as Geri the Cleaner, from Toy Story 2 says, “You can’t rush the art.” One dayI’d love to write a picture book, but before I do, I’ll have to master the task of brevity, that is not one of my strong suits.

I recently took an online quiz asking which superhero I was and got Wonder Woman, obviously they don’t know how long I’ve been working on my book. In the real world my hidden talent is displayed on the tetherball court which is why I asked, and received, my very own ball and pole for Mother’s Day last year. I’m currently seeking new victims, opponents since none of my family cares to play with me anymore.

 

On Workspace

1. Where do you do most of your writing?

Until last month, I did all my writing at my desk in a small room off the kitchen.

jenn workspace

Jenn’s Workspace

However, after we acquired a loveseat for our bedroom, it has become my new workspace. It’s brighter, quieter, and is usually accompanied by my biggest fans.

 Jenn pets

2. Where did you get your desk?

Growing up with a single mom, we spent a lot of time in thrift stores, which I still love doing today. My desk, hutch, love seat, and Keurig were all thrifts store finds. Initially, the desk didn’t fit, but my handy husband chopped off a few inches, swapped around the return, and Voilà, it did!

 

3. How did you go about arranging your work area?

I don’t really arrange things; I mostly move the mail out of the way before I work.

 

4. What are some important things on your desk?

I love quotes and how they are able to get the point across in a few simple words.I recite the one below almost every day before I begin writing.

jenn quote 1

5. Are there specific things you need to have around you as you work?

Coffee, water, my Emotion Thesaurus, and music.

 

6. What do you love most about your workspace?

That it’s a work in progress, like me.

 

7. Do you have any favorite objects on your desk, or things you use often?

Toys! Since I write middle grade my toys remind me to make time to play every day. I especially love the look alike Chibi my girl made for me and listening to the conversations between my Chibi and Mr. Spock. Vulcan logic can be very helpful in overcoming writer’s block. I also have a Staples Easy button nearby. I like to press it whenever I finish a scene, even though it rarely was Easy; pressing it makes me feel like it was. Another thrift store treasure is my antique typewriter. It actually works and everyone under twenty finds it fascinating.

 

8. What’s your writing beverage? What do you love to drink while you’re writing?

Coffee! Hot when it’s cold and cold when it’s hot.

On Writing

9. Who is your favorite author?

My favorite often depends on my mood.  Like most writers, there are many authors whose books I enjoy: Octavia Butler, Stephen King, Neil Gaiman, Lois Lowry, Kate DiCamillo, Beverly Cleary, Sid Fleischman,Khaled Hosseini … the list could go on and on. More than likely whoever you like, I like them, too.

jenn books

 

 

10. Who inspired you to write?

As a lifelong reader, I always imagined how wonderful it would be to actually create the stories that make kids laugh and cry. However, the person who actually lit the spark that had been smoldering inside me for several years was, Alexis O’Neil. I met her at a UCLA event. She encouraged me to join SCBWI and thus began my wonderful, yet precarious, journey as a writer.

 

11. What’s your typical day as a writer like?

With two active teens in independent study programs, I don’t have a typical writing day. My goal is to write four hours a day, Monday thru Friday, but often that doesn’t happen, so my writing often spills over to the weekends and sometimes, the wee hours of the night.

 

12.Do you have any writing-related rituals or quirks?

Before I begin writing, I like to close my eyes, recite a few prayers and inspirational quotes, before listening to what my characters have to say to me for this day.

 

13.What are some of your worst biggest writing distractions?

My teens are my biggest distractions and my biggest joys.

jenn teens

 

 

14. Why do you write?

I write because I love sharing the stories roaming around in my head. I rewrite because the stories in my head don’t always come out right the first, second, or even third time.

 

15. Any writing tips or techniques or words of wisdom you want to share with us? How about a favorite writing quote?

Recently, I learned it took J.R.R.Tolkien over a decade to write The Lord of the Rings. I’m not saying my WIP is the next Lord of the Rings, but hearing that inspired me to keep moving forward as did this quote from Richard Bach,

jenn quote 2

A big THANK YOU, to Nutschell who, even though I’m pre-published, still allowed me to share my writing space with you because, as she said, I am a writer!

 

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Thanks for giving us a glimpse into your writing life, Jenn!

Wednesday Writer’s Workspace is an ongoing series, and if you’re interested in being featured here, simply leave me a message in the comment box, and I’ll be sure to email you.

 

 

 

 

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12 Responses to “Wednesday Writer’s Workspace Welcomes Jennifer S. Pitts”

  1. I like how you start off your writing.
    I also dig your Spock bobblehead!
    The Emotional Thesaurus is something I also use often. Such a great resource.

  2. I love both your writing spaces. Your desk is so organized. Enjoy those teenagers. They grow and go out on their own so fast.

    • J.S, Pitts says:

      Thanks, Susan, I wish my desk was always that organized. I’m enjoying as many moments as I can, because you are right, they do grow TOO fast.

  3. Jennifer, such a nice way to really get to know you! I love your writing “helpers”. They look ready for you to sit and and pet them, ‘er work!

    Your kidlets are beautiful! The best kinds of distractions.

    • J.S, Pitts says:

      You nailed it, H.R., my helpers are always ready to receive a petting hand. Thanks for stopping by taking the time to get to know me.

  4. Hi Jenn, I really enjoyed your post and learning about you. I think that we have some things in common and I tried to follow you, but it wouldn’t let me. You are on my blogroll though, so I’ll be able to check in once in awhile.

    Hugs,
    Kathy M.

    • J.S.Pitts says:

      Thanks for stopping by, Kathy. Hmm, I don’t know why you couldn’t follow me, I’ll have to look into it. Thanks for the update. I look forward to seeing you around the blogroll.

  5. Maurice says:

    I love the Spock and thanks for sharing the stories roaming in your head.

  6. I love the loveseat!! I write mainly on the sofa as well, even though I have a proper desk, lol. Comfort is key!

  7. J.S.Pitts says:

    Yes, Lynda, comfort is key! I can’t believe how much more productive I am on the loveseat than at my desk. I’ll save the desk for editing and the loveseat for creating the stories I love :)

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