Anne here, answering a question asked by several people — do you keep anything special on or near your desk? We do, and we've decided to make it into a little fun competition, so you need to match description A, B, C, D, E, F and G with Wenches Mary Jo, Jo, Pat, Cara/Andrea, Susan, Nicola and me.
(**Post script: Alas, nobody guessed correctly, it was obviously harder than we thought. For the curious, the answers have been posted in the comments stream.)
A) North Carolina sand dollars from an author friend back in Charlotte, an ugly garden troll my Irish mother adored, and a mannikin from one of my St Louis buddies to dress up or down or let scream at the Forces. Special memories that have survived various moves…
B) Lamb Chop, the adorable white stuffed lamb on the printer is from New Zealand–Rotorua, to be exact. She fell in love with Wellington, the koala puppet who is cuddling her. It's like one of those war bride romances where she forsook all she knew to go with her true love. When they aren't cuddling, they like to argue the merits of their respective homelands. For example, which country has the best glowworms???? Sometimes I hear them giggling together in the middle of the night…
C) This old, ink-stained vintage piece of wood type sits on my shelf, a fitting companions for the books. (It likes to lord it over the paper pages, reminding them without letterforms they would merely be boring blanks!) I find the texture of the wood, the shape of the letter and the subtle shine of countless coats of printing ink beautiful, and it reminds of how much I love the whole process of making books, from writing and design to printing and binding.
D) The fairy inside this globe has been watching over my office for several years. Her gentle, magical presence reminds me, when I'm writing and glance up to see her sparkle in the light, that a little natural enchantment is always part of the writing process — what's imagination but a form of magic? My little globe-fairy likes to sit on the desk in a sunny spot, casting rainbows on the wall and carpet. At night (as in the photo), she basks in the glow of the stained-glass lamp that sits on the oak hutch. She's a good luck charm — and a music globe too, twinkling out a little tune now and then.
E) This paperweight is special and important to me. Important because my desk faces the windows, which are usually open, so I need something to stop my papers flying off in all directions. Special because it belonged to my grandparents and I loved it from when I was a small child. The colors are so deep and rich and it looks so mysterious, like a glimpse into other distant worlds. The seagull flying over the glass makes me think of magical journeys that I can take in my imagination.
F) I've always fancied a sword, and a medieval one especially. It's a good thing to have on my desk when my characters aren't behaving themselves.
G) I'm a born beachcomber and cannot come home from any trip without a small collection of pebbles and other sea detritus. I have several small containers that take it in turns to live on my desk from time to time. This is an alabaster bowl (once dropped and inexpertly mended, alas) that never fails to remind me of the sea. Somehow staring at these pretty little sea pebbles always sweeps my mind clear.
So, now over to you, dear readers. Can you match the desk objects with the wenchly writer?
Or if you don't want to play the game, just tell us, do you keep anything special on your desk?