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MARY LYDON SIMONSEN | How I Write Aka Talking To Myself

December 3, 2009

MARY LYDON SIMONSENSEARCHING FOR PEMBERLEYThank you for inviting me to write a guest blog on Fresh Fiction. I thought I would share with you today a little bit about my writing process, which actually involves a goodly amount of self-directed conversation, also known as talking to myself.

Before I sit down in front of a computer to begin my novel, I have been walking around with a story in my head for weeks, months, and in the case of Searching for Pemberley, years. By the time I put my fingers on the keyboard, I have very definite ideas as to how the story will begin and end, but the mushy middle is subject to change.

When I begin writing a story, I start with a “brain dump;” that is, I type out a very rough draft of a chapter. Once I have that down, I want my mind to be empty of all other thoughts, so I go for a long walk or I engage in some mindless task, such as sweeping the patio or pruning my shrubs. But when I really need to concentrate on a scene, my favorite thing to do is to get out my Shark steamer and clean my tile floor. Although my husband has gotten used to me talking to myself while I clean the floors, he’s still puzzled why I find it necessary to speak with a British accent. But it does make a difference. If I’m writing about a character from Britain’s upper classes, I talk in a posh accent. If I’m writing dialog for a servant, I affect a lower class accent. (My thanks to Masterpiece Theater for producing Upstairs Downstairs, which has both.) Sometimes I end up cleaning all the tile (and I have a lot of tile), but there are times when everything falls into place right away, and I return to the computer.

To read more of HOW I WRITE AKA TALKING TO MYSELF please click here.

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