How to write a book in a single night 0 Comments

How to write a book in a single night

(Wrap-up of The Book of the Night, White Night event, organised by The Emerging Writers’ Festival)
– by Rafael S.W


  1. Get a good team.

    I was joined by twelve other writers from vastly different backgrounds (from comics to poetry to misc) who would each take an hour of the night to work in.

  2. Prepare beforehand

    I’d practiced writing for an hour nonstop back when I was at university, but having to be creative at the same time was a new challenge. Especially as it would be during White Night and in front of a crowd.

  3. Bring some supporters

    It helped that I had friends texting me ongoing inspiration throughout my shift. This included such literary gems such as ‘Kanye West becomes ghost investigator’, ‘Put Nick Cave on I hate you,’ and ‘Bonercock’.

  4. Know when you write best

    I normally write at 7:30am. Turns out that for the event I would have the surreal pleasure of having to write from the hours of 1-2am.

  5. Work on equipment you’re comfortable with

    Who’d have guessed that attempting to use someone else’s Mac while you’re on stage would make you look like an 80-year old trying to send his very first email.

  6. Play music

    Both for yourself and for the audience. My music of choice for poetic productivity was Disturbed, but the audience seemed to want to request Mumford and Sons, Kanye West, Rick Astley and assorted miscellaneous.

  7. Don’t be distracted by the crowd

    It’s hard, especially when they’re shouting out all sorts of helpful things like ‘You’ve started writing all in capitals again!’ and ‘Play Nick Cave you nob!’ but you just have to keep it together. This includes when you look up and notice a person you’ve never seen before sitting quietly in the middle of the audience wearing a white plague doctor mask.

  8. Write lots

    My style meant that I cast aside anything that would slow me down, like spelling, grammar and plot continuity. This mean gems of new words, such as instead of ‘sandwich’ we got ‘snatchwich’.

  9. Don’t Panic

    Enough said. I didn’t really listen. Stay tuned for extracts to prove this fact!

(Photo Credit John Gollings)

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