Where worlds are made

251One question that I heard a lot while doing book talks was something I hadn’t been expecting. So many children were interested to know where I wrote. However, the more I thought about it, the more I realised how valid a question it was. Why wouldn’t you want to know about a small portion of the planet in which someone had decided to craft their own world.

This reminded me of an interview I saw years ago with Roald Dahl. I think it was on Blue Peter or something like that. They went into his writing workshop which was actually a shed in his back garden. If I can find it I’ll leave a video at the bottom of this post. He seemed so comfortable, and clearly had an unwavering set of habits he used to ensure that he was productive in his writing.

In a way that seems peculiar in itself; a fixed routine and an exacting approach to his writing environment allowed his mind to create such a mind-boggling array of radically different stories as ‘The BFG’, ‘James and the Giant Peach’, ‘Danny the champion of the World’, ‘Matilda’, ‘Fantastic Mr Fox’, and so many more.

Dylan Thomas

Dylan Thomas

Philip Pullman

Philip Pullman

Roald Dahl

Roald Dahl

Virginia Woolf

Virginia Woolf

It turns out that there are a number of writers who like to write in sheds and outhouses. Unfortunately I’m not one of them yet; my garden is too small and I don’t own a shed. But above is a selection of famous sheds (nabbed from an article in the Guardian).

wpid-imag1669_1.jpgAfter that distinguished list here is a picture, for anyone who is interested, of the place where Jack Reusen and his friends came to be. I’ve left it in its natural state: laptop, cup of tea, and chocolate all of which are essential for my writing (though I have been known to forego the laptop).

More NaNoWriMo tonight so I won’t be leaving a particularly long post. If you’d like to ask me any questions about the books, or characters, or about writing in general, please feel free to leave comments here, on Facebook, or on the Twitter account. As always thanks for reading, all the best, John

I found the Roald Dahl video on youtube but it was taken down, so here’s a different one that still shows the inside of his hut. The thing I like most about this video is that it shows that even the best of us procrastinate (in fact Roald Dahl seems to have perfected the art):

2 thoughts on “Where worlds are made

  1. Pingback: Where authors are heading in the next 5 years | Jack Reusen

  2. Alison Lamont

    Love this. It is fascinating to think about where worlds are made. Places are so often a large part of who we become and I am sure there must be many examples of writing being influenced by where it was written.



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