Every Wednesday, I feature a writer/blogger and his/her workspace.  My aim is to get to know fellow bloggers/writers better through their workspace and writing habits. I also wanted my bloggy friends to share some of their writing wisdom here.

Today, I am most eager to welcome M.J. Fifield, author of that fun blog My Pet Blog

Welcome, M.J.!


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?

M.J. Fitfield

Hi.  My name’s M.J. and I live in New Hampshire’s Mount Washington Valley.  I work in retail by day and write by night.  My main genre has been epic fantasy for quite a long time now but I also like to write literary, YA, and chick lit.  I also dabble in poetry when the mood strikes me.  Outside of reading and writing, I enjoy hiking, kayaking and Boston sports.  And if I told you what my hidden talents were, they wouldn’t be hidden anymore, would they?  But don’t worry… I don’t really have any.

On Workspace

1.  Where do you do most of your writing?

I am fortunate enough to have an office in my house— an entire room devoted to my writing— so it’s there where I do the majority of my work.  On certain occasions, I also will work on the living room sofa or at the public library (even though I do tend to do too much people watching there).

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

My desk came from my local office supply store.  I picked it out because I thought it to be well suited for the corner of the room in which I wanted it to live.

M.J.’s desk

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

In addition to all the technology, writing utensils (I am addicted to pens) and spiral bound notebooks, I have a pair of goblets my artistically inclined sister made for me.  They don’t hold mead but rather my indispensable supply of smarties and fun sized chocolate bars.

goblets of goodies

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

The thing I love most about my workspace is that it’s my workspace.  I love having a space specifically dedicated to writing.  My favorite objects are my mini bulletin board of flair (I love flair. Especially when it says something rude) and my giant six foot storyboard on which I lay out my story maps, calendars and other novel related whatevers.

M.J.’s Bulletin Board

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

Water.  Always water.  I find it helps to counteract all the sugar.

On Writing

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

In the seventh grade, I stumbled across Ellen Emerson White in the school library.  Well, all right, I stumbled across her books in the school library, although it would’ve been so awesome to stumble across her (it would still be so awesome, even if I’d gush over her and make a terrible fool of myself).  She wrote a series of YA novels that affected me as both a reader and a writer.  She really helped me figure out the notion of character and voice and for that, I will be forever grateful.  I am also rather obsessed with Joss Whedon.  The way that man tells a story is brilliant and if I could one day have a fraction of the talent that he has, I’ll die happy.

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

When I first sit down at the computer, I check my email, Facebook and Twitter (yes, I might be a slight social media addict).  Sometimes I blog and read others’ blogs (never as often as I’d like).  Then, if I haven’t wasted all my time, I might actually do some writing.

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

I try to write every day.  Some days are more successful than others.  I don’t have a set number of hours; I just devote whatever time I can to it.  Some of my worst writing distractions are my day job, solitaire and/or Minesweeper, impromptu Buffy the Vampire Slayer and/or Firefly and/or Veronica Mars marathons, housework (why is the laundry never done?) and of course my two very mommy centric dogs.  They’re adorable so I let it slide.

M.J.’s doggy distractions

4. Why do you write?

I write; therefore I am.  I write because I am driven to do it.  Even when I hate it (and there are many days when I do), I still write because it’s in my blood.  It’s what I have to do and it’s what makes me me.

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

Well, since I’m an unpublished nobody who can’t get her act together, I really don’t think I should be dispensing any wisdom but I’m going to do it anyway…  Editing/Proofreading is important.  If you don’t know the difference between “they’re, their, and there”, you should make the effort to find out.  But overall, I think if you want to be successful as a writer, you should probably do the exact opposite of everything I’ve ever done.  You’ll be a best selling millionaire in no time.

My favorite writing quote comes from Sir Philip Sydney (1554-1586): “‘Fool,’ my Muse said to me, ‘look in thy heart and write.’”


Thanks, M.J., for giving us a glimpse into your writing life.

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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30 Responses to “Wednesday Writer’s Workspace Welcomes M.J. Fifield”

  1. mooderino says:

    Nice set up. I especially like the goblets of candy.

    Moody Writing
    The Funnily Enough

  2. It was great reading about M.J. I’m going to check out her blog.

    She has a lovely workspace. I think my next desk should be a corner one, and those goblets of goodies are fantastic.

  3. TC Avey says:

    Thanks for sharing. Glad to know others spend time on social media before writing.
    Love the pics of the dogs.

  4. M.J. Fifield says:

    Thanks for hosting me today. It’s a honor to have been included in this series. =)

  5. ~Sia McKye~ says:

    MJ you have a nice office. Very neat. Please tell me you just made it look that orderly when you knew you were going to take pictures and when you’re actually working it’s messy.

    Love the chocolates, and Vigo’s pic on the wall by the couch. I have several mommy-centric critters and of course a kid too.


  6. Jamie says:

    Great interview, M.J. Also, your writing space – awesome. Yoru goblet of goodies and Serenity poster are epic!

  7. Those are two extremely adorable doggie distractions. With those two in the room, I doubt I’d ever get much writing done.
    Another wonderful Writer’s Workspace!

  8. This just isn’t fair. Her desk looks amazingly orderly and she has two beautiful pups to keep her company. My workspace is a disaster most of the time and my cat doesn’t keep me company, she tries to take over the keyboard. I’m extremely jealous.

  9. Yeah, your two distractions would distract me as well. And I really want your Serenity poster.

  10. Laura Eno says:

    Love the Serenity poster! I have cute doggie distractions too, but no daybed. I need to get one of those!

  11. I like this series. It’s fun to see how other writers live. I also have a serious pen addiction and I *wish* I had chocolate on my writing desk!

  12. Jay Noel says:

    Excellent interview.

    Wish I had a dedicated writing space. I work from home (when I’m not on the road), so my den has duel functions.

    Love the doggies!!!

  13. tara tyler says:

    fun interview! those doggies are sweet distractions, right?

  14. Shelly says:

    I love the dog photos. And I love your story board.

  15. Lynn Kelley says:

    Sounds like you’re doing many things right, MJ. I love your office, your nice, neat, organized desk (wow!), your adorable dogs, your huge bulletin board, and I thoroughly enjoyed reading about you.

    Great job, Nutschell. Love this series!

  16. Kelly Polark says:

    Wow! I love MJ’s first photo! So awesome.

    Your dogs are so cute, too!!! You look so organized!

  17. Donna Martin says:

    Hi! My mission…which I chose to accept…was to continue to visit as many A to Z Challenge participants as I could even after the challenge is over because I didn’t want to miss out on any great bloggers out there! Lovely blog…good luck with the rest of the year and I hope you have a wonderful weekend! BTW…I LOVE YOUR BLOG!

    Donna L Martin

  18. Hi Nutschell: You’ve been awarded the Kreativ Blogging Award. Please stop by and pick it up. Have a wonderful week.

  19. I’m so utterly jealous of your writing room. Especially the mammoth corkboard. I adore your dogs; they’re beautiful! :’)

  20. Always nice to get to know the coolest bloggers in the community – and M.J. fits nicely in that goblet :)

  21. Rita says:

    Love your workspace and your furry distractions! :)

  22. Dawn Malone says:

    Great interview! It’s always interesting to see creative spaces. I love that bulletin board, BTW! It really helps me when I can have my manuscript mapped out so I can see the outline all at once!

  23. I really like your Writers’ Workspace posts. And a side note: I had to forbid myself to start playing Minesweeper until right before I shut my computer down for the day. Otherwise, I play and play and play.

  24. Misha says:

    I love your office, M.J. I hope to have a nice writing space soon. That would be so lovely.

  25. Sue Roebuck says:

    Great interview ladies and I love seeing what’s on the computer. If I had those goblets of treats they’d be gone in five minutes, they’d glare at me until I scoffed the lot. That’s a nice map of the UK you have on your wall MJ.

  26. Hi, Nutschell,
    I’m envious of MJ’s writing space. Like her, I’m addicted to pens and notebooks.

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