‘I gather thoughts as I go; if I am right at the beginning of a novel I will have written down an idea that came to me on the train, or in the night, or whilst out on a run, and I might need it now.’
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‘Reading as a writer and not just as a reader is a different experience, both richer and less carefree; instead of simply enjoying the ride now you are paying attention to the mechanism that makes it possible’
That first phrase or line is like a magnet drawing other words to it and they begin to gather, sometimes quickly, sometimes over years, but again have to be scribbled down before I forget them.
‘Magpie-like I collect these tantalising fragments. They stay with me, glittering at the edges of consciousness until I pick one out intending to polish it until it gleams.’