When we write fiction, the ideas, actions and characters don’t just spring from our minds fully formed. Writing fiction is a process that takes time, perhaps even years. Sometimes, if we’re lucky, inspiration conforms to cliché and strikes us like a thunderbolt (this, of course, being a cliché writers do welcome), but normally inspiration glimmers and flashes in more haphazard ways. Fiction begins, as both Dorothea Brande and Henry James have suggested, in our creative and critical responses to the world around us. Being a ‘stranger’ on our streets means that we try to rub away the grime of habit and see the physical, social and emotional realities of place in newways. Being someone ‘on whom nothing is lost’ means that we absorb the nuances of character and conversation, whether that be on the bus or in Henry James’ own fiction. The imaginary world grows slowly in our mind’s eye as we explore the people, setting, and possible events of our story. We muse, we read, we research and we plan, building upon the fragments in our head until we begin to shape those glimmers and flashes into fiction.
Swipe to navigate through the chapters of this book
Please log in to get access to this content
To get access to this content you need the following product:
- Establishing Practice
- Macmillan Education UK
- Sequence number
- Chapter number