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Writing in a Room with a View by Patrice Fitzgerald

Writing in a Room with a View

Patrice Fitzgerald

I became a self-published writer on July 4th, 2011, which is Independence Day in the U.S. I figured it was a good day to declare myself an “indie writer.”

Since that time, I’ve published a political thriller about two women running for president, a series of science-fiction books based on the best-selling WOOL by author Hugh Howey, and a number of short stories for anthologies. Right now, I’m working on a novella about time travel that was commissioned by Amazon’s Kindle Worlds.

I’m a very lucky writer—I get to sit at my computer while watching nature. I have a little room with a beautiful view that overlooks a pond. Every day, the view changes.

WinterIn the winter, what I see is a backyard full of snow, stark, bare trees, and an iced-over pond. This is probably the least distracting season, but it’s still quite lovely. The snow features the tracks of animals that have snuck through my backyard in the night and makes me think of what a character might have going on beneath the surface. Occasionally, I see a group of young people playing ice hockey on the pond. Before they can start a game, they have to push the snow out of the way to create a makeshift hockey rink. Teamwork, conflict, competition—it all goes into the draft I’m writing.

SpringIt’s only February, but I’m already looking forward to warmer weather. In the spring I’ll look out on the tender buds on the
trees. The leaves will be small and light green, and gradually fill in the view. They block some of the pond, which I love to watch as it transitions from ice to “living” water, moving with the breeze. I was told by someone (who knows far more about trees than I do) that the beech trees in my backyard are more than 100 years old. I contemplate beginnings and endings, age, time, and change. This wisdom gets pulled into my manuscript.

SummerAnd then comes glorious summer, when the grass is fully green again, the trees are thick with leaves, and the water sparkles. This is the time of year when it can get quite hot here in New England. When I find myself procrastinating with my writing, I head down to our little beach on the far side of the pond and jump into the lake. Escape, freedom, a new environment… all fodder for the writer’s brain and the current book.

AutumnThe most glorious season is unquestionably the fall. There are days when the air is so bright with the afternoon sunlight that the trees seem to be part of an enchanted forest outside my window. It can be hard to write for the beauty. I’ll be sitting at my computer, typing away, and I’ll see the sun break through the clouds and turn my whole backyard gold. I have to jump up and grab my phone to snap a photo. In those moments of perfection I think of a happily-ever-after ending, or the impossibility of possessing the ideal. Once grasped, it slips from us, leaving only memories.

I will not always live in this house. Someday I won’t have this view. But it will live on in my mind’s eye as the room in which I began my writing career, and where I spent many happy hours distracted—and inspired—by the loveliness outside my window

Patrice Fitzgerald is a best-selling writer whose ebooks can be found on Amazon as well as on other popular platforms. Some are also in print. Her website is





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