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Monday, January 26, 2015

The stuff of fiction

Settings for novels take place … well, literally everywhere.  And, as P.D. James once noted, all fiction is largely autobiographical for the writer, and much autobiography is, of course, the stuff of fiction. 

Someone, like you or me, sits down and starts thinking about where and how to “set” a book or a short story or even to tell the story of his or her own life – and pretty soon we have something new to read.  It usually doesn’t happen overnight and it often is a messy process, but regardless of who is doing the writing, it’s yet another completion of a creative process that has led to everything from our neighbor’s “memoirs” to Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises.

 “(Writing) is undoubtedly a lonely career,” James said.   “But I suspect that people who find it lonely are not writers.  I think if you are a writer you realize how valuable the time is when you are absolutely alone with your characters in complete peace.”

Wise words from a wise writer who followed the same process that is followed by each and every one who has a writer’s moment, and then follows through.  Happy writing.

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