10 April, 2021

Room For Words

William Dalrymple on his surroundings, routine, and the quiet, personal quirks that allow him to write

Tribhuvan Tiwari
Room For Words
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53

Here, journalist, travel writer and historian William Dalrymple describes his surroundings, routine, and the quiet, personal quirks that allow him to write. His new book, The Return of a King: The First Anglo-Afghan War and the Birth of the Great Game, will be published by Bloomsbury in December.

I have two desks—one inside and one outside. Journalism, letters, e-mails are written on the one inside. This is in my study, a book-lined bunker on the ground floor, with a fan overhead for summer, and fireplace for winter. It is a bit of a mess: books, bronze Shaivite heads, photos, CDs and small ivory miniatures are muddled up in an avalanche of unopened post. But no real writing—that is to say, no book-writing—ever takes place here.

For, whatever the weather, my books are written outside. The writing desk lies at the end of the garden, in a shed open on two sides to the summer heat or the winter’s cold. Working like this gives me clarity, and space. It is also outside the range of wi-fi,...

In this article:

More from William Dalrymple


Latest Magazine

April 19, 2021
content

other articles from the issue

articles from the previous issue

Other magazine section