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 Meradeth Houston, author of Colors like Memoires and The Chemistry of Fate.

colors like memories



chemistry of fate




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?


Hi! Thanks so much for hosting me! Let’s see here: by day I’m a professor of anthropology, and often wish I had a cape and super-speed to ensure I got everything done that goes into my work J. I teach at the University of Montana and really enjoy it. By night (or whenever I can sneak it in) I’m a YA/NA writer, who loves a good paranormal/sci-fi story to keep me entertained. As for hobbies and interests, I’m a huge reader, love a good run by the river, and do just about anything I can to get to a beach. I’m afraid I don’t have any hidden talents—well, at least they’re pretty well hidden!



On Workspace

1.  Where do you do most of your writing?

I do most of my writing either at my desk, or on my couch with my laptop. If I can get out of the house and work somewhere else, I love a nice café with good hot chocolate and decent music.


2.  Where did you get your desk?  How did you go about arranging your work area?

My current desk at home is one I found at this random little furniture store that takes donations from people & businesses and helps abused children get job experience by restoring the piece. I think this is just about the best idea ever, and a lot of my place is furnished from there :). Bonus that they’re really, really affordable, because being a professor pays diddly.


Meradeth’s Workspace


3.  What are some important things on your desk?  Are there specific things you need to have around you as you work?

My most important things are my speakers—I love music while I write. Other than that, my white-board (not pictured because it’s covered in spoilers) is also pretty essential for me!


4.  What do you love most about your workspace? Do you have any favorite objects on your desk, or things you use often?

I have several notebooks around to jot stuff down on, and I love my decorations. My pictures are all from good memories, or of things that remind me of something from my stories. I love looking at them while I’m hashing out a scene.


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

Hot chocolate for sure! I drink way too much of the stuff, but I love it. I also enjoy a good Italian Soda, or tea if all else fails.

On Writing

1. Who is your favorite author?  Who inspired you to write?

My favorite author is definitely Madeline L’Engle. She’s been a big inspiration for me, along with JK Rowling. Both women have such great stories in the world that I wish I were better able to emulate.


2. What’s your typical day as a writer like?  Do you have any writing related rituals or quirks?

I don’t know if I have a “typical” day. Most days squeezing in writing time is a struggle, and it’s often in the evenings when I’ve somehow finished all my grading. This is the first summer where I’m not teaching summer school, too, so hopefully that will change!


3.  Do you write everyday?  How many hours a day do you spend writing?  What are some of your worst writing distractions?

I don’t write every day. I do journal daily, which kind of keeps me going, but I find that most days I’m lucky to get in a half hour to an hour. Weekends often more. My worst distractions: work, and the internet! Wow can I waste time on Pinterest!


4. Why do you write?

Because it keeps me sane :). Well, my husband might disagree with that, but I think it does! It helps me escape the real world for a while and relax.


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

I’m not sure if this is helpful to anyone else, but I’ve always believed that if you don’t give up, you can make something happen. It may not be soon, and it may not be the way you envisioned, but I definitely believe it’s possible for good things to happen if you just keep at it. That’s how I roll, at least!





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

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 Meradeth Houston”

  1. That is a gorgeous desk Meradeth and it must feel good helping people recover from tragedy. Thanks for hosting Nutschell!

  2. Meradeth says:

    Thanks so much for hosting me!! It was such a treat to share my space :)

  3. I need music when I write as well!
    Very clean desk, Meradeth.

  4. Shelly says:

    Are those stars above your desk?

  5. I love all of the thingamajiggies that are “flying” on your wall. And yes, I love hot chocolate anytime. With mini-marshmallows.

  6. A professor of anthropology – how interesting! And your desk is lovely.

  7. I admire the way that you find time to write and publish novels while maintaining a career as a professor. This must be challenging at times, but shows how much you love creating stories. Wonderful interview.

  8. How fun to learn a bit more about Meradeth and her writing space. Her desk looks awesome and I love the story behind it. It sounds like she got it from a great place to buy furniture. :) I really enjoy Meradeth’s writing style and now that I know two of her favorite authors- I can see why- I love both of them, too. 😉 Excellent words of advice! So true!

  9. Leandra says:

    We seem to be in agreement over your writing advice- I have a quote on my bookshelf that says ‘Make It Happen’. And the only way that’ll happen is if I just don’t quite and keep at it. =)

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