where the writers are
The Essential Writer: Writing as if Life Depends on It
Linda Merlino, author of <i>Belly of the Whale</i>

 

Meet writer Linda Merlino, awarded the Connecticut Press Club Runner-Up for Best Fiction of 2009 for her novel Belly of the Whale. Linda is a real working writer, as in a writer who has two novels under her belt and a third under way but still juggles other work, family and, well, life.

Now crafting her most demanding novel ever, Linda knows the less romantic side of writing and the importance of what used to be called the "perspiration" side of inspiration.

LM: Writing my third book in 10 years does not exactly make me prolific - persistent, maybe, but not prolific. The third manuscript should be a piece of cake, as the cliché goes; but, no, cake it ain't.

AA: What's involved in writing this book, and what role does daily discipline play?

LM: For one thing, the discipline needed chafes my inner free spirit; a five a.m. start is the key, but not always achievable.

AA: Most of us write, and - meaning we work at other jobs and write, too. What's a good day in the writer's life like for you?

LM: When I am in a rhythm, it clicks - rise at five, dog, yoga, write, work, home, dog, dinner, write, sleep. Throw in, or throw out, the following: fending off life's surprises, also life's responsibilities and oh, yes, having a life.

AA: Where does your inspiration come from?

LM: My inspirational thought: Nothing to do but write, write as if my life depended on it.

Visit Linda at Linda Merlino