The blessed quiet

silence and writing how to writeIf you’ve listened to my podcast with Valerie Khoo, you’ll know that we take a different approach to writing. Val likes to write in cafes and other places that have what she calls ‘ambient noise’. She even went so far once as to buy this app, which recreates the sounds of a cafe for you.

Me, I like the quiet. The blessed quiet. I think it’s one reason that I still write late at night, when the house is in thrall to that deep, dark, black silence that only comes after a long, noisy day. When the boys are sleeping, and the cars are tucked up safely in their garages. The only other silence I can compare it to is the almost unbearable relief of the quiet when a newborn baby finally goes to sleep, and peace settles over the house like a thick blanket.

I have no explanation for my love of this kind of quiet, except that it’s so damn noisy in my head all the time. My thoughts are so loud, the conversations I have with myself so intense, the thinking about whatever project I’m working on or what’s next on my To Do list is so constant.

That kind of noise needs no competition.

Do you like silence when you write, or do you, like Val, like ambient noise?