In my dreams, I retreat to a cabin somewhere remote, perhaps the Welsh countryside. My cabin is austere yet beautiful, spare yet luxurious in its sparse beauty. In it, I think spare yet beautiful thoughts, and commit them to paper (always paper), like some modern-day Thoreau, but with more elevated taste. Slate-clad, my cabin stands out against the wilderness, like the simplicity of my new life against the chaos of the world. This is that cabin.
I'm currently making my way through Walden, which is, to me, by turns beautiful and insightful and dripping with pretension (and sometimes both at the same time, because I am never one to dispute Thoreau's genius). So maybe that helps explain why this writer's retreat in the Welsh region of Snowdonia (yes, that's a real region) spoke to me so deeply. The design is simple yet lovely: mostly, it's a slate-clad box, with a thin strip of clerestory windows wrapping around the top, just below the roof, which gives the light inside a dreamy, otherworldly quality.
The cabin has just two rooms: the main room, and a small bathroom. Upon stepping inside, you'll find the sink and stove to your right: the stove heats the home and can also be used for cooking. Across from the stove and sink is a built-in table with two chairs, which also forms the headboard for the bed. Reaching the bed requires climbing up a few steps, which helps to separate the bedroom from the rest of the living area without breaking it up visually.
The majority of the living area is devoted to the bed, and to the piece de resistance at the end of it: a desk that stretches the length of one wall, with a panoramic view of the Welsh countryside above. If this were a normal home I might complain that there's not really much room for lounging, but since the program calls for a writer's cabin, devoting so much space to the desk makes perfect sense: after all, the notion of a writer's retreat is to write.
Maybe I should take a page from this book and replace my couch with a giant desk. Maybe this is the way to write the great American novel. Or I might just spend all day in bed.