Write Like Hilary Mantel: NaNoWriMo Tip #3

By Jason Boog 

In an excellent New Yorker profile, Booker-winning author Hilary Mantel shared two secrets from her writing life–these techniques will work for writers all year round.

Check it out: “When she’s starting a new book, she needs to feel her way inside the characters, to know what it’s like to be them. There is a trick she uses sometimes which another writer taught her. Sit quietly and withdraw your attention from the room you’re in until you’re focussed inside your mind. Imagine a chair and invite your character to come and sit in it; once he is comfortable, you may ask him questions.”

This is our third NaNoWriMo Tip of the Day. As writers around the country join the writing marathon this month, we will share one piece of advice or writing tool to help you cope with this daunting project.

But that’s not all. Here is a bonus writing tip from the same article: “When she wakes up in the morning, she likes to start writing right away, before she speaks, because whatever remnants sleep has left are the gift her brain has given her for the day. Her dream life is important to the balance of her mind: it;s the place wehre she experiences disorder.” (Photo via John Haynes)