Sunday, August 14, 2016

Louis de Bernières on Notebooks and Word Processors

Louis de Bernières writes sometimes in a garden shed, but says that "more often ... I write in my library, which has thousands of books. I’ve also got absolutely stacks of notebooks, which makes my creative life a bit chaotic because I don’t know where to find things." Furthermore:
Prose I usually write straight on to the computer. But I wrote my first novel, and some of Birds Without Wings, longhand. My poor sister used to type things up for me. Eventually, she gave me £500 and said, “Get yourself a word processor.” So my next three books were written on a Brother with a tiny black screen and green writing, which I called Esmerelda. It was actually my most fertile period, and I often wonder whether I should go back to Esmerelda. I still have her in the attic.
I don't know about Esmeralda and fertility, but I do know that indexing one's notebooks is a very good idea. It is a tremendous help in finding things.

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