I’m attracted to endeavors in life that require almost no equipment. Running is my favorite sport because I need little more than a pair of running shoes to do it. I enjoy cooking with just a couple of favorite tools. I like to travel with no more than I can easily carry. And I find writing attractive in part because all I need is my imagination, pen, and paper to get started.

Okay, I don’t really use pen and paper most of the time. But when people come to my house, they see a big desk and assume it’s where I work. I mostly don’t though. I work on a laptop, and I move around with it from bed (yes, bed) to patio to desk to sofa, depending on where the light is good and where my poorly insulated house is neither too hot nor too cold. I’ve also at various times worked in coffee shops, parked cars, and a hammock.

I think it’s important to keep your equipment spare and your needs simple so that writing doesn’t become a ritual of preparation that is really just a whole lot of procrastinating. If any of your writing needs start with a statement like “I can’t write unless…” it might be time to ask yourself if that’s really true.

Do we really need a desk in an office with a computer, printer, internet connection, and a shelf of reference books to call ourselves writers? No way. The only thing a writer really needs is the will to start writing and keep writing. The rest of the equipment is optional and might distract from the task at hand.