Susan Grossey

My two writing desks

Inspired by fellow writer Debbie Young and her recent blog post, I thought you might like to see where I write.  Like Debbie, I write in two different genres: for me, it’s non-fiction serious books about money laundering (and anti-money laundering) on one hand, and then historical financial crime fiction on the other.  And in order to keep them separate in my mind, and to discipline myself to concentrate on the right sort of writing, I have two distinct writing locations.

Here is where the serious day job takes place – the money laundering/AML stuff (which isn’t only books, but also monthly articles, policies and procedures for clients, and a blog):


A couple of things to note: the dice do not indicate a gambling addiction but are needed for a money laundering game that I am developing, and the cheque on the desk is a perfectly unlaundered one (a refund from DVLA because I have taken a car off the road).  Apart from that, we have my trusty Filofax, and a round speaker for my iPod – I can only have instrumental music on while I write, but I am fond of the soundtracks from “The Piano”, “Amelie” and “The Forsyte Saga”.

And here is where the fiction writing is done – in our back bedroom:


Note the inspirational mousemat covered with photos of Richard Armitage as John Thornton in the BBC dramatisation of “North and South” – a friend and I drooled over his brooding loveliness for weeks, and she made this mousemat for my birthday.  The two creatures are reminders of holidays in Lithuania (that’s Zak the yak) and Tasmania (Lonnie the possum).  The desk and cafe chair were bought in a local antique shop – they felt “right” straight away.  The top of the desk slides forward to reveal this clever little set of compartments for storing desk-y things:


And this is the view from the window – I’m very fond of it.


So that’s where I sit when I think about Sam and Martha – I’ll be there again tomorrow, trying to ensure that I reach my 2,000-word weekly target.


  1. Debbie Young Avatar
    Debbie Young

    How lovely! Both the desks and the view look so calm and peaceful. Thank you for sharing them, Susan. 🙂

  2. ihatemoneylaundering Avatar

    I’m at location one today, Debbie – and in addition to the dice I now have a tabby cat reclining under my desk lamp, which she uses in the winter as a feline sun-lamp. My clients are used to getting paperwork with added cat hair…
    Best wishes from Susan

  3. Graham Avatar

    Dear Susan

    Can I please add my thanks to Debbie’s, for sharing the two desk system with us. It’s great to see where all the Plank magic happens !!

    Best Wishes


  4. ihatemoneylaundering Avatar

    Dear Graham
    So now you know! I was there just a minute ago, researching Quakers and their social reform work… (rather than their oats).
    Best wishes from Susan

  5. Writing what you feel | Susan Grossey

    […] time”, and I will admit that I didn’t much fancy going up to the back bedroom (where I do my Plank writing) and trying to travel back to Regency London.  But then I realised that I have actually been […]

  6. Just write, or something like it | Susan Grossey

    […] for producing top-notch historical fiction.  But over this weekend I have forced myself to turn on the Mac in the back bedroom (regular readers may remember that I keep an old Macbook called Flora [after Flora MacDonald…] […]

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