Susan Spess Shay

Still playing make believe.

Linda Trout’s Closet


Let me explain–

There’s this thing about me. I think people are fascinating . (ie: Everybody has A Story!)

I might have mentioned, I’m not only a writer, I’m also a reading knitter (or a knitting reader.) Naturally, I like to read about other people’s lives. I’ve suffered mightily because most knitting magazines only have patterns, nothing about the knitters who created them.

There is one TV show I watch about knitting. This past season, they advertised they’d changed their format to include a segment that was about studio to studio, I was so excited! I thought we’d get knitting area tours of their homes. I hoped they’d show us the whys and how-I’s of their lives.

Again, disappointment! Turns out, it’s just a segment done with the host in one place, the guest in another, but nothing about the guest’s home or knitting area or how they make life work while knitting.

Now that’s a real a bummer. 😉

So I started wondering, are there other people like me? People who like to see behind the scenes and inside the lives around them? Where people (writers) work, how they work and why?

Ummm, could be!

So I decided to take up the slack.

(♪♫ Fanfare! ♪♫) Let me introduce to  you to–

 Linda Trout’s Closet

linda-at-her-deskI’ve introduced Linda to you before. She’s one of those nice ladies who is really gorgeous and talented and writes tension filled books. She writes suspense and has two books and a novella to her credit!

Her most recent release is Last Hope Alaska.


It’s a fabulous read! (If you click on the title, it’ll take you to the place where you can buy it, and I’ll get the credit!)

I’ve never been in Linda’s home, so I asked her where she writes.

Linda– “My office is a former walk-in closet that’s shaped like an L. The ‘L’ part is used as storage…has a set of shelves that are loaded down w/blankets, extra pillows, etc.


Me: Where are some other places you write?

Linda–“When I’m at home, my office is the only place I write. I make it a point to not write outdoors. I’d be too much like, “Ooh! A squirrel!” Soon the writing would be totally forgotten as I can find all sorts of things to do in the yard.”

Me: What’s the atmosphere like?

Linda– “It’s grand central station. Cats come in to bug me to pay more attention to them. One wants in my lap and another wants me to rub her belly. The credenza is packed full of writing stuff, a lot of which could be pitched so the drawers would open easier. As I said before, the ‘L’ is a storage area. Suitcases, old press kits that the lady from the Tulsa World brought to our meeting that time, tote bags from conferences, bedding, office supplies, table decorations for book signings, business and personal receipts. You name it, it’s probably stuffed in there. LOL.”


“I always have a glass a sweet tea sitting next to the computer and a bag of cinnamon roasted almonds on the shelf for a ‘brain’ snack.”


“You can see some of my contest certificates hanging on the wall as well as a couple of quilts. One, my MIL made for us as a thank you for putting a new roof on her house a couple months after my FIL passed away. The other is a Yo-Yo quilt top my maternal grandmother made for me when I was a teenager.”

Me: So, do you have a ritual or something you do to start your writing time? Light a candle, play your sound track, bite the head off a chicken?

Linda– “Sorry. No chicken sacrifices. Unlike a lot of writers, I don’t play music, either. I do my best writing at night when all is quiet, the cats have settled down-or gone outside, hubby has turned off the TV and gone to bed. All the lights are out except for the one in my office (we have a very open concept home). The office is just around the corner from our bed and even though the man is out like a light 90 seconds after his head hits the pillow, I still try to be quiet. I guess this helps to center me so I can focus. It’s amazing the plot points I get figured out after 10pm.

Me: That is amazing, because I’m out like a burned down candle stub after 10 pm.


Linda– “Oh, and I always work in sweats in the winter, and shorts and a t-shirt in the summer. Comfort all the way! LOL.”

Me: Okay,  so where’s the weirdest place you’ve ever written?

Linda– “It really isn’t a weird place, but I once wrote several hundred words on a Dana on my way to Alaska for vacation. Then I wrote while sitting on the bed and looking out of the window of our B&B and watching a pair of Bald Eagles teaching their chicks to fish.”

 Me: That’s so cool! (Not sure I could stay in and write with all that going on.)

Linda adds: “I’m pretty plain Jane, I suppose, compared to a lot of other writers. Too bad I don’t dance around in colorful outfits, blaring music that could wake the neighbors 10 acres over. My quieter side (some would say my inner psycho, since I write suspense) seems to be where my stories come from. Hmm I write about killers and I do my best writing when it’s dark outside. What does that say about me?”


Me: It says you’re a darned interesting lady! I knew there was A Story there!

So, anybody else have a question for Linda? Anything you want to know such as how many hours she writes each week, how long it takes her to write a book, does she take her characters from real life or what her favorite part of the process?

All you have to do is ask! I’m sure she’ll be glad to answer. 😀






Author: Susan Shay

For as long as I can remember, I've loved two things--reading and people--and that led me to become a writer. Many of my stories are set in Small Town Worlds. I'm a wife, mother, sibling and an aunt. I have a deep faith in God, and an exciting life in Christ. Maybe I shouldn't be (after all, he's God!) but I'm constantly amazed at the things He's up to. :)

22 thoughts on “Linda Trout’s Closet

  1. Great post! That is one big desk! I hadn’t seen your space and thought sure it was a small space. 🙂

    • I know, Ashlynn! I’m amazed by how big her walk-in closet is!

      • Susan, the entire area isn’t all that big. It’s about 8’x10′, not counting the L. The one thing I didn’t mention is the back wall is the roof line and it slopes so that cuts off a lot of footage, especially in the L area. :p

    • It IS a big desk! The thing is, I can have every inch of it covered in paper, scribble notes, etc. Wish I were better organized like you, Ash.

  2. Reblogged this on Ltrout's Blog and commented:
    I’m the first honoree of Susan Shay’s new blog series on getting to know writers and where they write. How cool is that?! 🙂

  3. Aw, Linda, I imagined you writing in a totally pristine spot with not a single shred of paper out of place. 😉 btw, I love the quilts!

  4. I’m impressed with how neat your workspace is! Mine looks like me…like a hoarder works in it!

  5. Love the huge vase of flowers – are those there to remind you of all your achievements? I see the tags. Tell me about those

    • Our writers group used to give a rose with each accomplishment. Then when we were drowning in roses, we switched to charms. So much fun!

      • Yeah, Jolene. What Susan said. Guess I picked up a ‘few’ roses along the way. Of course I had to keep all of them as reminders. In fact, that was my very first job in the group. As the Rose Coordinator I had to pull together everyone’s accomplishments for the month then present them with the rose. Which meant I had to stand up in front of everyone, then try to remember who was whom. (I’m not good with names you know.) Definitely a challenge for me.

  6. Susan, thank you so much for highlighting me and my workspace today! I’m sure glad the camera didn’t pick up the fact the walls need to be patched and painted or the layer of dust on everything. Hey, I never claimed to be the perfect housekeeper, either inside my office or out. 🙂

    I’m looking forward to seeing who your next victim, er, volunteer is and what their workspace looks like. Maybe they’re a hoarder. Or maybe they’re super organized with every piece of paper in its proper place. At any rate, this has been fun. Hugs, my friend!

    • You’re so welcome, Linda! I’ve always wanted to see your closet, and I have to admit I’m very impressed! I thought about a surprise visit, camera in hand. But I didn’t want to alienate anyone. LOL.
      I have a couple more writers in the line up and I’ll be tapping someone else soon. Who knows who’ll be next?
      Thanks again for being such a good sport!

      • If you had shown up at my door, camera in hand, you’d have been in for a huge shock. No makeup, hair not combed, possibly still in my robe. LOL Definitely not anything I’d want to visually share with the world. But I did have fun.

        When are you going to show us YOUR writing space, Susan? {wiggles eyebrows}

        • If I wait until I get my office clean, you’ll never get to see it. 😀 But I’ll probably pop mine in one of these days when I don’t have any victims–er–authors who’ve agreed to show up.
          I still have a lot of people in mind, though, so hopefully you won’t see mine for a long, long time!

  7. Pingback: Come With Me To HollyWorld! | Susan Spess Shay

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