Sheds seem to be all the rage at the moment. Not only was 2005’s Turner Prizewinner a shed (one that had been rebuilt as a boat, sailed down the Rhine and turned back into a shed), but lots of articles about them seem to be appearing everywhere. This is partly because people are beginning to work from home in large numbers and find a garden office is more cost-effective than moving house, but it’s also generating interest in writers, probably the group best known for shed-based working. Back in May 2005 the BBC ran a magazine article about sheds, but now even the professional journal The Author is soliciting information from Society of Authors members about their writing spaces. The journal doesn’t have a web space for some reason, but here’s a sample from the Winter 2005 “Sheditorial”:
“…it’s a curious fact that the places where authors write, and the possessions they have around them, exert an extraordinary hold over the imaginations of readers. Sheds have a particular cachet. Bernard Shaw’s celebrated revolving writing shed at Ayot St. Lawrence is now in the care of the National Trust. An exact replica of Roald Dahl’s shed has pride of place in the Roald Dahl Museum, and the original is still carefully preserved.”
I’ve even fallen victim to shed fandom myself and have written about it in the next issue (Number 20) of The Reader.