Writing doesn’t have to be a solitary business.

Jo Driscoll
3 min readJan 24, 2023
Photo by Darryl Kelly on Unsplash

Ask anyone what a writer does, and they will probably come up with some romantic notion of them sitting on a beach, sipping an ice-cold drink and tapping away on their laptop. Or how about sipping coffee in a cafe while bashing out the next bestseller?

In reality, most writers tuck themselves away in their spare room at a desk, sit on the sofa with a laptop or find some other place they can find peace.

I have a computer and desk in my spare room, which I use a lot unless it gets too cold with the draughty windows, and I resort to the sofa. What this setup lacks, though, is other people and can become quite solitary. The great news is, it doesn't have to be!

Co-working spaces.

Where I live (in the UK), there are various co-working options with local council schemes and private businesses. You either rent a permanent desk or office in a building or a hot desk, i.e., whatever desk is available.

I haven’t tried co-working, but I can see so many advantages.

  • You’ll have people to interact with.
  • You’ll be able to network with other freelancers and businesses and possibly gain new clients.
  • Leaving the house to go to work can help keep you motivated and less distracted.
  • You have some accountability.
  • You can separate your working and home life.
  • You can bounce ideas or problems off your co-workers if they’re willing.

Virtual co-working

I happened upon a tweet by another writer advertising her weekly virtual co-working sessions via Zoom. I jumped at the chance and have found it incredibly useful in several ways.

We work using the Pomodoro technique in short stints of twenty-five minutes followed by a short break. I think the breaks are meant to be five or ten minutes, but we always run over!

  • I have accountability.
  • I find the sessions very productive as we are focused on working in the poms and then sharing progress in the breaks.
  • I learn new things from our discussions.
  • I have discovered things I do…