Hygge and Your Writing

You’ve probably heard of the hygge craze. But, just in case you haven’t, hygge (hue-gah) is a Danish word with no exact translation in English, but basically means cozy. It refers to a sort of aesthetic, and can be complex. The Danish have it down to a seemingly innate science.  Hygge is warm (and often expensive) lighting, gatherings with fmily, and wrapping up in a blanket with a warm tea or coffee to read. Candles are often involved.

That said, what is your writing space like? Do you have a writing space?

There’s a reason people often head out to coffee shops and book stores to write. These places tend to have quiet atmospheres, warm lighting, and hot drinks. In a book store, inspiration surrounds you. It’s hygge. But it isn’t home, and what if inspiration strikes you after closing time?

You need a space in which to write where you live.

For those of us in tiny quarters, or those who have small children running amok, that’s easier said than done. Fortunately, tininess can be a major component of hygge, and hygge can be a major component of cranking out words.

All you need is a tiny corner in which to write; ideally it should be your tiny corner. No toys in the tiny corner. No work supplies in the tiny corner. Nobody’s stuff but yours, and of your stuff, only your writing machine and a small number of things which bring you happiness.


  1. A surface on which to place your laptop/tablet/notebook/typewriter. A lap desk counts.
  2. A chair, preferably comfortable but not so cushioned you sink into it. Something that promotes good posture without hurting your ass if you sit a good while.
  3. For the cold-natured, a heating pad, socks, bedroom slippers, thick bathrobe, or soft blanket is a must.
  4. A candle, lit. If scented, it must not be offensive or too strong. I sometimes use incense.
  5. Minimal distraction. A small plant is ideal. If there are trinkets, they should bring you joy and be few in number.
  6. A drink. Coffee or tea are preferable, but if you’d rather have something else, you do you.
  7. A view outside is great, but not a must.
  8. If you listen to music, it should be unobtrusive and of a quiet volume. Classical is ideal. Try listening to a study station on Spotify or Pandora; these numbers don’t typically have much variation of intensity, making them less distracting.

A writing space need not be your own home office. It only needs to be a space specifically set aside for writing, and should be completely clutter free. If you need to dust first in order to relax, do so. Don’t leave toys/clothes/syringes scattered around on the floor; tidy up before you write.

For more information on the art of hygge, check out this book.

4 thoughts on “Hygge and Your Writing

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