Nov 3, 2009

Pat Bertram Shares her Writing Space

Pat Bertram is the author of three novels -- More Deaths Than One, A Spark of Heavenly Fire, and Daughter Am IHer novels can be found on Smashwords and at other retailers.  She recently agreed to share with us her writing space, and she's included beautiful photos of her book stacks.  Please welcome Pat Bertram, photo of the author taken by D. Bertram, to the blog.

Okay, I admit it: I am a closet pencilphile. Seems silly, I know, in this electronic age, but I write in pencil on loose-leaf paper. There. I’ve outed myself. I feel so much better now.

I am not being contrary. It’s just that I have a better mind/writing connection using pencil and paper than I have with a keyboard, a mechanical pencil is easier on my fingers than pen, and paper is easier on my eyes than a computer screen.

I do have an office with a double folding table for a computer desk, which gives me plenty of space to spread out all the “to do” notes I make but never read. 

The walls behind me are lined with books like three-dimensional wallpaper. I spend hours in my office every day, especially now that I blog and network more than I write, but for creative writing I sit in bed, clipboard propped against my knees or on a pillow. If, as Mel Gibson said, “A movie is like public dreaming,” then novels are like shared dreaming, and where better to dream than in a comfortable bed?

For me, fiction writing is largely a matter of thinking, of trying to see the situation, of figuring out the right word or phrase that puts me where I need to be so the words can flow. I don’t know the entire story before I writing, but I do know the beginning, the end, and some of the middle. That way I can have it both ways: planning the book and making room for surprises.

So, there you have it. That’s how and where I write. As for why I write, what inspires me -- there are stories I want to read, and since no one else is writing them, I have to.

Pat Bertram is a native of Colorado and a lifelong resident. When the traditional publishers stopped publishing her favorite type of book — character and story driven novels that can’t easily be slotted into a genre — she decided to write her own. Daughter Am I is Bertram’s third novel to be published by Second Wind Publishing, LLC. Also available are More Deaths Than One and A Spark of Heavenly Fire.

About Daughter Am I: 

When twenty-five-year-old Mary Stuart learns she inherited a farm from her recently murdered grandparents --grandparents her father claimed had died before she was born -- she becomes obsessed with finding out who they were and why someone wanted them dead. Along the way she accumulates a crew of feisty octogenarians --former gangsters and friends of her grandfather. She meets and falls in love Tim Olson, whose grandfather shared a deadly secret with her great-grandfather. Now Mary and Tim need to stay one step ahead of the killer who is desperate to dig up that secret. 

So what did you think of Pat Bertram's writing space.  Isn't it great?  I love the lines and stacks of books!  A bibliophile's dream.

Also, check out my two-part interview with Pat Bertram, here and here.


Sandy Nawrot said...

Whoa! Those are some huge stacks of books! I would be scared to be crushed under them should they fall! I love seeing where authors work. Thanks for sharing!

Serena said...

Sandy: Those stacks are huge!

Anna said...

At least I'm not alone in having huge stacks of books! LOL

I also write with a notebook and pen, at least for my creative writing. After sitting in front of a computer all day at work, I find the notebook more intimate and thought-provoking than the harsh monitor. Going to read the interview right now.

Diary of an Eccentric

bermudaonion said...

Seeing her book stacks makes me feel good about mine!

Anonymous said...

Serena, thank you so much for inviting me to be a guest on my blog. I enjoyed talking about my writing space and sharing the photos.

Sandy, I've never been crushed beneath the books, but they have fallen several times. One thing about having to put them back in place is that I always find something I didn't know I had.

Anna, it's so nice to met another pencilphile! Not many of us left.

Other Lisa said...

Hah! That looks like my house! Cool Wall O' Books!

Bridget said...

Hi! Just posted about this on Win A Book.

nat @book, line, and sinker said...

the only time i write longhand is in my vacation journals. i have them dating back to the late 80s.

as for the wall o'! it makes me nervous to have books on the floor--i'm a shelf type of girl!

i love this feature, by the way. so clever and entertaining!

Sheila Deeth said...

Oh wow! I love your wall!

I got a typewriter for my 21st birthday and a friend taught me to type. The only trouble was I kept jamming the keys. Computers were my salvation and I could never go back to pencil and paper - truth to tell, I could never read what I'd written if I did.

Anne Lyken-Garner said...

I don't have that many books.

I must say that I couldn't write with a pencil and paper even if I tried. It would hurt my fingers endlessly, having to crunch them up to write.

Amazing space you have there.

Belle said...

Wow, love those book stacks!
So enticing.

Diane said...

OMG...Look at those stacks. Someone could get killed if those books fell on them...LOL (Just kidding of course) ENJOY

Anonymous said...

Thank you all so very much for stopping by to see my writing space and to read about my writing idiosyncrasies. It's interesting how we all have our various ways, and yet the product -- written words is the same.