Blog posts with the tag: "time"




Every since I was young I’ve been fascinated by the thought of time travel. Not travelling to the future, however, but to the past. I always wanted to solve certain mysteries, like how the pyramids were built, or who Jack the Ripper was. I also wanted to see people from history that I admired, and see what they were really like.


There are some eras which, in particular, interest me. The ancient civilisations always engross me, as well as the Tudor and the Stuarts. I love the dark Gothic of Victorian London, as well as Belle Epoque Paris, the 50s, 60s, 80s and 90s. It doesn’t matter that I grew up in the 80s and the 90s, I’d like to explore them as an adult, there is something so attractive about the music, film and cultures of those decades.


With the excellent television adaptation of Stephen King’s novel, 11.22.63 currently airing on the Fox channel here in the UK, and the much-anticipated second season of Outlander on Amazon Prime, it got me thinking about how time travel is an excellent writing prompt.






Where would your character travel to? Why? How? Would they travel back in a machine? Through a wardrobe? With a car? What would happen to them in this ‘new’ old place? Would they fit in? Would they be in danger? Would they be rich or poor? Invisible even?


And even if you’re not interested in writing a time travelling adventure, just imagining what it would be like to live in a different time can help with historic novels, or even just researching the background of a character or a flashback.


Where would you travel back (or forwards) to?




I have always considered myself to be a voracious reader, especially when it comes to fiction, but recently I’ve had a creeping notion that perhaps this isn’t the case any more. Why? I’m feeling guilty that the internet is taking up my reading time. Of course I read on the internet; usually articles on or Buzzfeed, newspapers, social media and endless pictures of cats and food that I want to eat but can’t because I’m trying to give up sugar. All of this is fine – it means I’m clued up on current affairs and what is going on in the world, but I can’t help but feeling like my brain is numbing to it all. I don’t want to read about z-list celebs but I find I do anyway. It makes me feel like a zombie.



The internet is changing the way we think. We are more distracted then ever before. I am certainly guilty of watching something on the TV whilst simultaneously reading an article on my iPad and checking my Facebook on my phone.



All of this screen time culminates in far less ‘proper’ reading time for me. I’m taking longer to read novels than I used to, and because I am accustomed to distractions and information overload, I tend to read not just one book at a time, but several, which makes the process of finishing a book even longer.



I honestly feel like I’m cheating on my books with the internet, and it feels wrong. My ‘to-read’ list is getting longer and longer and my ‘have read’ list is looking pathetic. There are so many fabulous novels, novellas, short stories and poetry out there that I want to read. I still haven’t read all the classics and there are fantastic new titles coming out all the time. We are spoilt for choice.



I’m going to take a stand and bring back book reading. I will reduce my website checkings to first thing in the morning, and in the evening after I’ve finished up for the day. I might even put a timer on this so I don’t start reading one article and end up losing hours of time by clicking related links. When I commute, I’ll use that time to read fiction, either from a physical book, or from my Kindle.



Apparently stopping your ‘screen time’ 2 hours before you go to sleep will improve your sleep. I don’t know if I can quite reduce it 2 hours (I have a backlog of TV shows to watch on Netflix) but I will endeavour to read last thing before I go to bed. I’d like to get through at least one book a week (my past-self would have scoffed at this – I used to get through at least 3).



Why am I doing this? Apart from the pure joy of reading, I believe it is important for writers to read. The more you read, and the wider you read, the better a writer you’ll be. I’ve said it before and I’m sure I’ll say it again.



Is the internet taking over your precious reading time?

Heather Blanchard

Welcome. Are you a writer, a bookworm, a daydreamer? Are you still clinging on to that magic that pervaded childhood? Pull up an armchair and get cosy. This blog is my dreamscape through an enchanted forest to a world of stories and the little things that make me happy; a chance to add a dash of sparkle to the daily grind. Here you will find the whimsical, the coveted, the Gothic and the romantic. Happy exploring!

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