Virginia Woolf’s famous quote, that to write fiction, a woman must have ‘a room of one’s own’, is something I once believed to be true. That it was important to have the perfect space to compose my stories in.
But though I still dream of having a roll-top writing desk, and a stunning view, (as evidenced on my pinterest board) having written nine books now, I have come to realise that it’s not really necessary to have those things to be able to write. I have written the majority of my books while sitting on my bed (not the best thing for my posture, I know, no need to lecture me) or on the sofa, or in various other places, some of which had a view, some didn’t.
I’ve also come to realise that as long as I can write on some form of computer, I don’t need special equipment to write on either. I don’t have any special tools, a writing totem or any kind of ritual at all. I do need plenty of snacks usually, and have to stay hydrated and warm, but there ends the necessities.
Part of me would love to have some bizarre writing ritual, that had to be performed before a writing session, just to add a little more eccentricity to my life. But over the last few months, I have come to realise that in fact, the only vital ingredient necessary for me to write well and enjoy myself is this:
If I am excited to tell the story, it doesn’t matter where I am, what I’m wearing or what view I have. All that matters is that I can let that story flow quickly through me and out into the world. And if I lose my excitement for the story, no amount of rituals or special tools are going to coax it out of me onto the page. (Well, certain snacks might do the trick, especially a good lemon meringue pie)
When I finished writing The Twin Flame Reunion, I had no intention to plunge straight into the next book, because I usually allow a bit of time in between books. But the story had already begun taking shape in my head, and as it was the season of Nanowrimo, I felt excited to get the next instalment written. So I went for it. And my excitement for the story meant that I finished the novel in the shortest time it has ever taken me to write a book.
No sooner had I finished that one, did I want to write another. Suddenly, all I wanted to do was write. And not just in my usual genre for my established collection and series, but I also had ideas for trilogies and other series of books that I felt excited about. Writing and publishing only two books a year now feels like too little. I feel like I haven’t really pushed myself enough, that I’ve been slacking too often.
So don’t be surprised if you find that by the end of this year, I have written way more than that, because that is definitely my intention – whether I have a room of my own or not.