A Room with a View
Last week, I had the chance to go to Fallingwater, one of the homes Frank Lloyd Wright designed here in Western Pennsylvania. It's a lovely place that fits organically into the landscape. I remember the first time I saw the countryside surrounding Fallingwater. I had seen many photos of the home in the past, but it was along the road leading to the house that I saw the large, rectangular boulders jutting out from the hillside and realized that they must have been Wright's inspiration for the design of the house.
We toured the house, which is actually situated over the creek and a small waterfall. Everywhere in the home, Wright designed the rooms to be close to nature, and the views are spectacular. He also created all these fabulous nooks and crannies and writing corners where I could definitely see myself writing lots of books!
And it got me to thinking about the creative process and the environment. Could I write a better book--or have more creative ideas for books--if I lived in a place like Fallingwater? Not very many people have that type of opportunity to be so close to nature, and have the absolute ideal, picturesque setting in which to create. But that's my latest question: does it matter where I write? Would it change the writing itself?
I'm due to read The Right to Write by Julia Cameron, which I re-read every summer. In that book, as in some of her other writings, she emphasizes writing in the midst of life. Many people hope to take that sabbatical to write their great American novel. But most people can't take a year off their lives. So, the key is to write in the midst of all the busy-ness, the activities, the long work days. So, my gut tells me that no, where I write doesn't matter.
But then I look at a place like Fallingwater, and I am just dying to get to my journal, and sit at one of those fabulous desks overlooking the creek. And it's maybe that response--that longing to write--which a closeness to nature helps.