In which we examine some of the influences that shape our writing lives. In part one I thought I would look more closely at the peripherals – those external aspects of writing, mostly outside our control, that nevertheless directly affect how we write and what we write about. In part two, we’ll scrutinize the writing process itself.
In my experience, writing isn’t a life choice, like exercise, or dieting. We don’t decide to become writers any more than we decide to become a man or a woman (well, most of us, anyway); by the time we’re ready to make such a conscious decision; writing has already made the choice for us. It’s a compulsion: innate, and as inevitable as death and taxes.
So let’s start with some advice: