My novels are becoming such profound journeys. Each of them is set in a place, in a time that inspires me. I find myself overwhelmed by the true stories that incite the books. It’s a case of becoming so immersed in what really happened, in the people and their worlds, that I start to wonder how I will ever craft a novel out of such things, but, then, somehow it happens. It’s hard to describe the process. Suddenly, my own characters will start jumping up and down, wanting to be heard. At that point, I have to write their book.
For THE THINGS WE DON’T SAY, travelling to London and Sussex was a stunning part of the process for me. I was at a point where I’d written the first draft. But to see Bloomsbury, to walk where my characters would have walked, to sit in the squares where they would have had their particular discussions, to be able to touch the railings on the fences where they would have rested their hands, where they would have held on while climbing the stairs into their houses, was honestly so enticing, that I ended up coming home and re-writing at least half of the book.
It’s hard to describe the allure of going to a place where your novel is set. It’s hard to describe the sense of being so close to your characters when you walk where they walked. I guess, for me, travelling to the locations around the world, wherever they are, has become an intrinsic part of my writing process. It’s yet another delightful thing that I am so fortunate to do in this wonderful writing life.