Wednesday 27 February 2019

Changing the weather

One of the advantages of being a writer  - amongst other things, you get to control the weather. If you want to have a long hot summer in the book, you got it. Need a convenient storm, fog, deluge of rain, all you have to do is call it up. Most writers try to keep within the bounds of possibility though, just. The idea that the UK has long hot summers as a matter of course, can be a bit hard to swallow sometimes, but it looks as if truth is beginning to look stranger than fiction, and making the unlikely a lot more plausible.

When I was writing What Happened at Christmas, I wrote a freak snow storm with my tongue slightly in my cheek. And then the Beast from  the East  arrived and a sudden amount of heavy snow didn't look quite so much like something a writer might invent. I must admit that the snow in the book did disappear conveniently quickly, but you can't have everything.

And now we have record temperature in February. I must say that I have often taken a picnic lunch to the beach in February, but it's usually been eaten with my coat on. In the last couple of days in the middle of the day it's been like summer. Still frosty at night though, which is an interesting contrast. Apparently it is going back to 'normal' later in the week, but the precedent for unseasonable weather has been set. And don't get me started on the garden. Daffodils, jasmine, bees. In February.

There are some things that don't change though, sunrise and sunset are fixed points and one of my pet 'things'. I get annoyed if I'm reading and other authors don't take note of them, and I've had to change planned scenes in my own books when I've realised it would be too dark, or too light for what I had in mind.

Not everything is in the writer's control. You still have to work with nature sometimes.   

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