On being a writer...

A celebration of the writing process, of being a writer, of all the weird things that pass through a writing brain...

Sunday, 5 December 2010


As I embark on the last stages of rewriting this latest (still title-less) book, I rely on a certain magical 'grip' which sometimes occurs in these last weeks. It's to do with being absolutely inside the characters - not overtaken by them, but knowing what they'd see, think, do as if they were my own self. I went to see 'The Master Builder' (Ibsen) on Friday, and great theatre relies on this kind of transparency too. The characters may be complex, and it may be that they are motivated by many different and opaque feelings and experiences, but the fact that they are in this state of uncertainty is itself transparent. Confusion, rage, love, doubt and all the million nuances in between, all are transparent through gesture, word and action. And so with writing when it's really taking off. The writing is such that the reader is never in doubt that they are in the presence of a living breathing character, even when that character's chief preoccupation is doubt itself.

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