Jilly: Writer, Interrupted

Writer, InterruptedHow much control do you have over your writing, or reading, or work time? Is there anything you can do to make a better environment for yourself?

We live in a world of constant interruption. These days I work from home, and my environment should be more controllable than it was when I worked in an office, but in truth the flow of people popping their head into my office has been replaced by the ping and pop-up notification of emails, texts and messages, phone calls on my mobile and land-line, doorstep callers, and over the last four months, a team of builders re-decorating the house. Continue reading

Jilly: Meaningful = Memorable

32821555_sThink back to a book you read ages ago. What has stuck in your memory?

As I predicted last week, I’ve been mining some good stuff from Joseph T. Hallinan’s fascinating book Why We Make Mistakes. It’s a collection of popular science that explores human error, perception, memory and behavior. I bought it hoping I might find some handy hints about how to iron out the wrinkles in my writing process. I wasn’t disappointed (more about that next week), but I also picked up some interesting thoughts about how to make my characters and descriptions more memorable.

One snippet that caught my attention was a discussion of what we find it easiest to remember about people, and why. Continue reading

Jilly: Memory and Mistakes

835111I had a great post planned for today – all about Sir Arthur Sullivan (of Gilbert & Sullivan fame), one of the most talented composers of the Victorian era, who chose to create popular works rather than prestigious ones. The intelligentsia of the nineteenth century were outraged, but he followed his muse (as Michaeline recommended yesterday) and his clever, witty comic operas are still giving pleasure to 21st-century audiences around the world, while his critics are long-forgotten.

I’ll probably still write that post at some point, but not today. I got distracted by a very interesting book: Why We Make Mistakes, by Joseph T. Hallinan. I bought it thanks to a conversation I had a couple of weeks ago in a Lake District pub with one of my in-laws. I was ‘splaining the unpublished author’s possible paths to publication and why it can be such an endurance event, borrowing liberally from Jeanne’s summary, when we got hung up Continue reading