In 2005 Alex Johnson began publishing a magazine called The Shed for those of us who, like him, work from home in outbuildings and sheds. The magazine was soon joined by a blog called Shedworking, and the blog became this beautifully made, smartly written book, which landed here yesterday. What a lovely, passionate, well informed book this is. It is difficult to read it and not want to build a shed and get to work.
Like the blog that inspired it this book is essential reading for anyone considering setting up to become a shedworker; if you are already a shedworker you’ll want it on the shelf too. It contains a history of shedworking and famous shedworkers, from Pliny, to Gustav Mahler and Roald Dahl, musician Peter Gabriel, human rights lawyer Clive Stafford Smith, and journalist Andrew Marr. There are many, many marvellous pictures of sheds and garden offices, shedworkers’ stories (a lovely surprise was finding my own shed on page 56), advice on building your own, what you might do there, on green shedworking and possibilities beyond the shed: canal boats, railway carriages, airstream caravans and treehouses. What comes across most of all is the happiness shedworking brings to the lives of those who have arranged to be able to do it.
A preview of the first chapter is here. More on sheds and shedworking on Alex’s Shedworking blog, and at Uncle Wilco’s Readersheds where you can vote for Shed of the Year 2010 and follow the build up to National Shed Week 2010, which begins on July 5th.
In the mean time, why not buy Shedworking: The Alternative Workplace Revolution