The First Page

Was it the French poet Claudel (whose sister was Rodin’s mistress for a time and herself a no mean sculptor) who wrote this unforgettable phrase for a writer? ‘La blancheur du papier qui se défend.’ This morning I didn’t face the forbidding whiteness of a page, too...

Returning to the Start

The gales started up while I was sorting out the first draft of a novel I had written some time ago. I was settling into my writing chair by the window that overlooks the Minster and watching the pale yellow leaves of the silver beech were dancing around the tree and...