I've always thought that you could tell a lot about a person by what they keep on their desk--and, of course, what they don't. Is there a stack of magazines? Of books? Random scraps of paper? Are pens kept in a mug? Organized by color? Shoved into whichever drawer is most convenient? And, to that end, the ultimate question: Pens or pencils? Fountain or ballpoint? Or--gasp--gel?
I, for one, keep my (cheap ballpoint) pens in a tall New York mug. An old apple sauce jar serves as my paintbrush holder, my postcard collection hangs on the wall above the desk, and when the sun goes down, there's nothing quite like writing by candlelight. (My personal favorites? The Grace candle from Philosophy and the Paddywax Library Candle in Edgar Allen Poe--a gift from Sam.)
In fact, the only thing that ever really changes on my desk is the stack of books. And lately, even those have been rather permanent. For one thing, the golden dictionary Radley gave me last year has definitely cemented itself as the most beautiful book I've ever owned. Love Letters of Great Men always seems to inspire me, too, or at least remind me why I'm so in love with language.
And the other two books--also gifts from Sam!--well, they've come to sort of define the space. A Writer's Paris serves as both a guide and a source of inspiration for anyone who's ever wanted to get away and write in the world's most romantic city... Truth is, I find myself reading bits and pieces from it nearly once a week. And A Year of Mornings, first inspired by a blog between friends, makes me want to be a better writer, photographer, and friend.
Oh, and the Tiffany box? Well, that's just because it's my favorite color.
And, okay--let's get real here--because it's Tiffany's.
What's on your desk?
What do you think it says about you?