Sunday, 12 December 2010

Writing and the Seasons

This picture is so cute. Just looking at it makes me feel like I'm about five years old and full of wonder at everything!

I've been thinking about weather recently and how it affects writing. I've realised that I have a tendency to start books set in Autumn, putting the characters through the trials and tribulations of Winter, finally resolving the story in Spring / Summer. I'm wondering is this a universal thing or something peculiar to me. Obviously Spring and Summer are much more hopeful and optimistic times so it makes sense to end on a high. Maybe I'm just a sadist to my characters - throwing bad weather at them as well as everything else they have to endure!

For example The Watchers has a very short timeline in its current form - the whole book occurs in a ten day period in October. Book Two begins around 6 weeks later, just a few weeks before Christmas, with the threat of the weather changing and the temperature plunging.

This probably wouldn't seem like a big deal to a reader in Canada or Switzerland or anywhere else the entire country doesn't go to hell whenever there's a bit of snowfall. Here though, it's all people are talking about. The snow and ice are bringing real misery to some areas - the novelty has long since worn off. A reader from the UK / Ireland will see a potential menace here. It's interesting that readers from other places might think, "What's the big deal lady? So it's snowing. And...?"

I'm trying to think about books I've read where the weather almost becomes a character in itself. Any ideas?

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