We are very delighted to be welcoming Graeme Simsion to our blog today and his blog tour for his new novel, The Rosie Effect which is the follow-up to the fantastic, The Rosie Project. Graeme talks to us about how writing much of the novel in New York influenced it.
I had about half of The Rosie Effect drafted, and a clear idea of where it was going, when I arrived in New York with my wife for three weeks in December 2013. We had spent seven months there in 2010, and this was a chance to catch up with friends and revisit favourite places. A holiday: but I had vague intentions of working on the novel, which I felt would benefit from being written ‘on location’. By the time we arrived, those intentions had crystallised into a plan: I would try to write two thousand words every day and finish the draft. As motivation, I promised myself that any day on which I failed to meet the target would be an alcohol-free day.
One of the pleasures of NYC is its bars and restaurants, and I’m a reasonably enthusiastic consumer of wine and the occasional cocktail (‘occasional’ meaning ‘on the occasion of being in New York and it being evening’). I didn’t miss a day. My wife was particularly impressed to find me up at 7 a.m. on Christmas morning, writing diligently. We had champagne with the turkey.
I wouldn’t recommend the regimen as a long-term approach, but getting the writing done while I was in direct contact with the setting rather than relying on memory was a definite benefit. Don’s world is largely cerebral, and he’s not particularly observant of his surroundings in an aesthetic sense, but he does take note of the practical environment: weather, transport, commerce. New York is an iconic city, and I needed to put it on the page, albeit through Don’s eyes.
My US editor commented that after reading The Rosie Effect, she had to metaphorically wring herself out, alcoholically speaking. As did I after writing it.
The Rosie Effect by Graeme Simsion is published by Michael Joseph on 25th September, £14.99 hardback
Available for pre-order here!
Follow Graeme on Twitter: @GraemeSimsion
The Rosie Effect blog tour continues tomorrow over on Wondrous Reads.
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