I’ve read stacks of books about writing because it’s always been my passion, but my all-time favourite wasn’t actually written as a book – it’s a collection of radio talks for young people, given by the wonderful poet, Ted Hughes.
Although it’s called ‘Poetry in the Making’ it isn’t just about poetry – it’s about the whole writing process, and it’s full of great advice and insights.
People often ask authors where their ideas come from, and Hughes explains that there’s this continuous flow of stories going on in all of us, all the time, like fish in a stream. We don’t have to go searching outside ourselves – we just have to learn how to fish.
As a dreamer, I know this is true. The stories of dreams are happening every single night of our lives; they’re abundant and spontaneous, although we may not even be aware of them unless we learn how to capture them through dream-recalling.
Hughes talks about how to find our stories, and also about why some pieces we want to write just don’t seem to come together. He says no-one can write about something they don’t care about – that’s the key and if you get stuck, it’s probably because you don’t care enough.
You can feel the passion in this book, and know that writing is something Ted Hughes really cares about. I love the way it’s written.
If you love writing, I think you will love it too.
What subjects might you feel passionate enough to write about?