I write where I find space, usually at the kitchen table, or failing that, I decamp into the dining room. If something catches me, I tend to try and put it down on whatever is to hand – often the back of an envelope. However, for ‘serious’ writing, I enjoy the freedom a laptop gives me (instant editing, copy and pasting without endless crossings out!).
On the mechanics of researching, writing or editing, I definitely prefer writing, or at least I say that… when I actually set aside a block of time to research, I am always pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoy the sense of achievement from discovering something new; maybe I will have to revisit that question.
I have many authors and poets I would look up further work to read, but I cannot pin anyone down. Recently I was captivated by The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini, and went on to enjoy And the Mountains Echoed, but I haven’t picked up his third book yet. Often a book I initially struggle with becomes the one I am most disappointed to end, isn’t that often the way! Poets come and go, depending on mood, but I often revisit Marianne Moore; I am intrigued with how she pays attention to the visual representation of her work, as well as such carefully chosen language.
Possibly the first book I fell in love with was The Princess and the Goblin by George MacDonald; it certainly influenced me, as I based my dissertation on the influence of MacDonald on 20th century writers such as Chesterton, Tolkein and Lewis. He was described as possessing a ‘fantastic imagination’ (C. S. Lewis), and that phrase has always inspired me.
And finally, the inevitable pet question; seeing as I have a beautiful border collie who insists on regular excursions, I suspect that ‘dog’ would have to be my choice.