Thursday 7 June 2012

Easy writer

So here we are, almost the second week in June, and I have just put the heating on again. The rain is pelting down, as it has been since April, yet we have a hosepipe ban. It's a mad, paradoxical world, my masters.

As writers, we are often asked (well, I am) how the creative process of writing a book happens. What I think people desperately want to hear is the apocryphal Enid Blyton response on the lines of: I just wander into my little writing place, and suddenly, all sorts of lovely characters and plots tiptoe through the mental bluebells straight into my mind fully formed, and all I have to do is write them down and hey presto! a book appears. In other words, writing is easy, and you, interested interlocuter, could easily do it too.

Sorry, it doesn't work like that. At least not for this little duck. In another of these paradoxes, I find that  creativity only occurs when disciplinary structures are applied. Rigorously. In other words, I have to make myself sit at the keyboard, regularly, and write. I can fantasize about the book all I want, imgine the amazing prose that I will write when I get round to it, but until my rear end and the chair are brought into contact, and remain in contact for long periods of time, nothing creative happens.

 Sure, there are moments, and flashes of inspiration, when one stares at the screen, and wonders whether the Writing Fairy has just made a house call, but on the whole, these episodes only tend to emerge out of a period of just slogging away at the writing process.

An article in today's Guardian lifts the lid on how to be a successful e-book author. No secret, sadly. A lot of labour and a bit of luck. Heavy on the former. As Wm Blake remarked: Without contraries is no progression. Ain't that the truth!


  1. Where are you? I have missed your blogs and pithy wit!

    1. Apologies. Put it down to dismemberment of novel prior to rewrites. But, like a famous filmic character: I will be back!!


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