A Cold Place to Write

When I got the wi-fi working in November, I figured I could write in any part of the house. Certainly any place warmer than my office on the north side of the house. Like the kitchen island or table and beside the wood stove.

We’ve had arctic weather in Northern New Mexico for a while now. As one forecaster from the National Weather Service put it, the jet stream got parked over us and hasn’t budged in almost six weeks. One recent morning it was minus-20 when I left for work. Sunday it was still in the single digits at noon.

We keep most of our house warm enough via its passive solar design, pumice-crete walls with a high R-value, and a wood stove in the great room. (We keep the floor’s radiant heat off to save money.) Alas, the stove’s heat doesn’t reach my office.  The cat won’t even go in there.

But cold or not, my office remains my best place to write. Here, the words come one after the other with ease as I build a new story. That doesn’t happen as easily elsewhere. I don’t know why but it’s so.

Except for the cold, I can’t complain. I work at the desk my husband Hank built. My books and arty things I treasure are here. There’s a good Morris chair Hank built and a bed we let visitors use. The main window is 6 by 5 feet. During the day, I have a great view of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, now snowy, and the sagebrush mesa that extends to the Rio Pueblo. During the night, like now, I see the room’s reflection on its black surface.

So, until the weather breaks, I am toughing it out. I just bundle up. The ideas keep coming as I write and frankly, that’s what warms me these days.


2 thoughts on “A Cold Place to Write

  1. I know this sounds just a little silly – however:

    I have had a friend who goes thru some OCD things to keep his heating bill down & was using a wood stove – had a similar problem venting to his bedroom.

    His solution: Wal-mart usually has those vent boxes that you put on the end of a dryer hose to use the heat to cycle into the house rather to outside. He got two of those vents & rigged a nice piece of dryer vent hose and ran one end into the bedroom. In the other end he rigged it above the wood-burner and placed a little (but high powered) fan that is usually used to cool & vent high powered Computers in the vent box blowing thru the vent pipe to the other room.

    I’m not going to say that it was like a blow-torch or anything – but it did keep the room much warmer than it was before. Whole thing cost him about $50.00. If your office is not incredible far away might be worth a try!

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