Five great authors settle down to write
From the quill to the typewriter to the screen, writers throughout history have been influenced as much by their exterior surroundings as they have by their interior thoughts. How and where they sat provides some insight into the creative works they have left the world.
Great expectations. He’d admired Gad’s Hill Place in Higham since he was a child and used to walk past and dream of living in it. In 1856 when he was wealthy enough he bought it and set to work once more. Here, from the comfort of this chair, he would write some of his most famous novels, including A Tale Of Two Cities, Great Expectations and Our Mutual Friend. Charles Dickens, 1812-1870.
Jacob’s Room. Nowadays it is preserved for visitors to look in on where such masterpieces like Mrs Dalloway, To The Lighthouse and Orlando were written. While this writer’s lodge in Sussex was somewhat austere here was some comfort to be had, the reading chair and sprawling grounds providing a place of shelter for the author until her tragic walk to the local river. Virginia Woolf 1882 - 1941
Cards On The Table. With the surrounding Devon countryside this author’s Greenway home was used as a source of inspiration for many of her mysteries. The ordered, no-nonsense setting mirrored the analytical mind of her famous detectives – Hercule Piorot and Miss Jane Marple. Agatha Christie, 1890 – 1976.
Going Solo. In an old wingback chair at the heart of his writing workshop this author had everything he needed close by (paper, pencils) and all around (privacy, peace). With a sleeping bag for his legs should it get cold, and a carefully crafted writing table, it was here he wrote for decades, delivering to the world fantastic foxes, marvellous medicine and big, friendly giants. Roald Dahl, 1916 – 1990.
Money. From within a small building at the end of a concrete garden, the author can look up from his desk through a glass ceiling that is “covered with leaves and squirrels”. It needs to be comfortable too, as he will enter “around 10 and usually clock off at seven, but I don't write all the time. A lot of it is just reading or sitting around thinking.” Martin Amis, 1949 -.