Recently,  I grabbed dinner with a friend of mine from when I worked in the financial services industry. To me, that seems like a lifetime ago but it is actually equivalent to only a couple of–amazing!–years. His name is Kevin and we mostly talked about books we like and why we like them as we shared dinner at an overhyped restaurant in the LES, called “Mission Chinese.” 
In this friend-session we also talked about the act of underlining in books, an act in which I engage in fiendishly and sometimes manically, as well as how the things we underline are topically representative of ourselves. The things that speak to us at a set moment in time usually encapsulate how we view the world at that point in our lives. 
Following dinner we walked around and it was pleasant. The weather was at the precise intersection of where one is warm enough to be horny and cold enough to crave cuddling. The last person I have been horny and cuddly with recently received an email including my question: ‘Do you happen to have my copy of Bright Lights, Big City?’ The inquiry remains unanswered, but it is highly likely I might have previously clarified I never want any answers–and certainly no questions–from that recipient. I am glad I gave this book, because whatever, there are always 50 copies of it at all the used bookstores I go to and it is almost as easily replaceable as the good Bret Easton Ellis ones. However, I don’t actually plan on replacing it anytime soon; I did enjoy reading it when I did but I am not feeling a void since realizing it has been gone.
The person I was when Kevin first got to know me is still a part of me, but when he knew me I was underlined very differently. For example, I used to go to a funny place that is no longer in existence, which we can call “Not The Beatrice.” I used to go there with a friend of mine I no longer remember,  and we used to spend a ridiculous amount of time (and money) in the bathrooms, because it was that era of our lives. During a winter night there was a beautiful girl that pointed at me and complimented my coat. Claire had an expensive eye–because my coat was Dior Homme and it was tailored to fit me expensively–but she also spoke British and asked to do coke. I had none, but others did and when “Not The Beatrice” closed much after the hour all other places closed we ended up in a Soho apartment that was way too nice and full of everything Claire could ever want. My nightlife friend kept falling asleep, but I was awake and so was Claire so then we let everyone sleep and did things mostly with our hands. 
Today we’re kicking off a new feature at the Giant, WORD SPACES, which will consist of authors talking about where they work when they are writing and how the space affects their work, etc.
To kick it off we have David Gianatasio, the author of MIND GAMES, just out from Word Riot Press. (also the author of SWIFT KICKS from So New Media). He is a longtime fixture in online and independent lit and a really good guy.
Here is a piece from the book at Alice Blue Review.
And here is where David writes:
My workspace is a small hallway — the entryway, really — of my apartment. It’s a very nice apartment — you can’t really see how nice it is from the picture/s. The hallway is the most cluttered & cramped area by far.
Why write in a hallway? Well, that’s where I keep the computer. It’s a laptop with a WiFi card so I could write anyplace in the apartment. But then I wouldn’t be in the hallway. You see what I mean.
The computer’s on an old bar filled with old VHS tapes I never watch. I’ll stick my hand in and pull one out at random. Godzilla vs. The Thing. Classic.
Maybe it’s symbolic. The entryway to my home holding the doors of perception, the gateway to other times & places, unlocking the secrets of soul & mind.
I was really reaching there. Sorry. Next film … Columbo: Prescription Murder. In Columbo, they showed you whodunnit in the opening scene. I always found that reassuring.
The smoke and carbon detectors are right above my head when I work. More than once, they’ve gone off in a shrill and nerve-shredding fashion, causing me to squeal like a girl and stand up suddenly, knocking my computer to the floor. Also when my wife comes home, she opens the door and knocks me off my chair.
There’s a photo of me as a 7 year old to the right of the computer, above the printer. Sometimes, when I’ve written something really good (like my new book, MIND GAMES from Word Riot Press!) or remembered my login for PayPal, I turn to that picture and say: “Way to go, little guy!”
I should probably stop doing that.
I’m going to reach in for one last tape …
I was hoping it was a Barney the Dinosaur (I know there’s one in there), or something racy so I could say: “Whoa, that’s a naughty one!” But in fact I pulled out a blank unused cassette. Empty … waiting for content. Will it ever reach its potential?
Given the theme of this piece, I think that says it all.
And really, how do you even know for sure there are tapes in these? Maybe I use it to store cheese. And if I do … well … I should probably stop doing that.
Look out for more of this feature with some really awesome people coming up, hopefully weekly for Wednesdays…