Is ‘pretty’ important?

Nicole Walsh Author
2 min readJan 2, 2023

Originally posted on my website, 22 April 2022

I love stationary. I most particularly like stores that stock stationary items (Officeworks, anyone?). When I was less skin-flint-poor, I spent a lot of time skimming up and down the stationary aisles, admiring the pretties, being inspired by the organised. Fiddling with this and that, buying expensive folders and nicknacks.

It wasn’t just about functional, it was also about pretty. I was purchasing a look, a feel, an energy.

Ensuring the space around my creative heart is appealing, organised and pleasant helps me sit my ass down and concentrate.

I know of writers who hammer away at a laptop on the kitchen table. Not everyone has the luxury of carving out a space to permanently be their creative space. Not everyone has the luxury of lining this space with pretty useless things to put them “in the mood” for being creative. The world is full of people time-sharing kitchen tables, the kids’ homework area or the garage.

For those of us lucky enough to have a space dedicated entirely to us and to our craft, how are we using it? What items do we surround ourselves with? Are these items pretty, functional or unrelated?

My mind is cluttered with worries and doubts and distractions. If I am not careful, my external world can begin to look like the landscape of my internal world — splashes of chaos, half-done things piling up and more than a few trip-hazards.

Packing things away, organising them into spaces, marking and labelling things, setting like with like, setting up cards and reminders and to do lists and visuals keeps me on track. Keeping the space pretty and fresh and appealing makes it easier to plop my ass into this seat when I haul ass out of bed at 3am.

If my writing space is pleasant, fresh and clear of clutter I am in a better headspace to take my creative world seriously.

What does your creative space say about you?

If you are lucky enough to have a choice in what you surround your creative heart with, what choices are you making?



Nicole Walsh Author

Nicole writes short and novel length speculative fiction. She writes a weekly blog at: or