Jonathan Fryer

Writer, Lecturer, Broadcaster and Liberal Democrat Politician

Archive for August 8th, 2017

Writing Is a Lonely Craft

Posted by jonathanfryer on Tuesday, 8th August, 2017

IMG_2689It’s 42 years since my first book (The Great Wall of China) was published, but as I get stuck into Number 16, I ruefully reflect that writing never gets any easier. At least, not for me. It’s not just the brain-wringing over every word and phrase, or the countless rewrites in my head before I commit something to paper. The process of writing takes over one’s whole life and can make one positively anti-social. There are authors who write, secluded, in the morning, before then enjoying a normal life for the rest of the day, but I find it almost impossible to put whatever I am working on out of my head. When I am in company, over dinner, for example, I say little and often my thoughts drift away from the table (better than that modern curse, checking one’s smartphone every few minutes, I suppose). And I absolutely have to have several waking hours each day absolutely alone. Writing some of the time, yes, but also reading, thinking and walking — especially when I am somewhere beautiful or new. I even prefer travelling alone. In fact, I spend nearly half the year doing just that. To some people that might sound awful, and, yes, it can sometimes be lonely. But as a working writer, I wouldn’t have it any other way.

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