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26-01-2023

Lucy Flannery confesses to an out-of-control obsession with stationery, explaining that every notebook and index card has a role in her creative process and reminding us that nothing is ever really thrown away when you’re a writer.

Alexandra Benedict considers the many different modes of sensory perception (including her own intriguing experience of synaesthesia), and explores how the senses can make their way into writing.

C. D. Rose investigates the allure of famous incomplete and lost texts and asks why we are so fascinated by these elusive literary works.
Cliff Forshaw, painter and poet, describes how honing his craft in one medium informs the other, and how experimenting with form influences both his art and his writing.
Nicola Baldwin describes her first forays into writing about medical science, and how this became a major theme in her playwriting.
Linda Hoy reflects on the contribution made by Thoreau to present ideas about the natural world and the value of walking to mental and physical health.
Like many young writers, Lizzie Nunnery resisted the idea that literary inspiration needed to be subjected to editing and revision. But then she came to see these as an organic, and essential, part of the writing process.
28-02-2019

Steven Pinker speaks with his old friend and schoolmate, the RLF’s Marcy Kahan, about his writing and editing process, why the Enlightenment matters more than ever, why the world is actually better than it used to be, and some approaches to achieving happiness.

Plot is often the hardest thing to get right when starting a novel, argues Beatrice Colin, but surely (as F. Scott Fitzgerald is said to have remarked) plot and character are inseparable? She outlines some of her own strategies for getting to grips with the story.
11-01-2018

Kevin Clarke speaks with Frances Byrnes about playwriting as an essential dramatic apprenticeship, completing his education as an adult, and how his dramatic subjects choose him, rather than the other way around.

Lucy Jago’s passion for a long-dead Norwegian physics professor led her to the top of a mountain in the Arctic Circle, watching the play of the Northern Lights at minus 30 degrees Celsius. And this from a woman who never liked science, and never meant to be a writer.
From our heartbeats to our breathing, to the feel of walking or running, we are programmed to respond to rhythm. No wonder we react so viscerally to the rhythm of words. Bill Kirton says rhythm is as important to prose as to poetry, as well as to songs of protest and football chanting. It may not be in our bones, but it’s a basic aspect of how we survive.
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