The Guardian has an ongoing feature displaying writers’ workrooms. The common features tend to be clutter, piles of books, and undistinguished furniture. Shown is the room of AS Byatt, who says:
The objects in the room are in a way a metaphor of my mind. They are brightly coloured, or transparent, and are about intricate patterns and structures. I collect glass paperweights. There are also stones. A piece of the chalk cliff at Flamborough Head in Yorkshire, a bit of pumice from an Icelandic lava field. Rose quartz from Norway and rose quartz given to me by a Korean friend. My favourite is fantomqvartz (the Norwegian spelling) one crystal growing inside another. On the wall there is a Matisse poster of Leda and the Swan and three watercolours by John Houston – watercolour is bright and transparent too. There is a case of South American insects I found in a Conran shop, and a glass dish of snail shells. There is also a reproduction mediaeval print of Babel Tower. Snails, towers, DNA. I like spirals. It looks like clutter but it’s a kind of order.