I try to write about 1,000 words a day in longhand and then edit it very carefully later before I type it out. I have been known to stop in the middle of a sentence sometimes when I’ve reached my limit. But self-discipline is enormously important — you can’t rely on inspiration or a novel would take ten years.
I always prepare a very detailed synopsis before I start writing. Sometimes this will be anything up to 30,000 words in length. It’s just me working out my story and my cast. I once did one for a book called The Unlimited Dream Company where the synopsis was longer than the book.
I’ve lived in Shepperton in Middlesex for the past 40 years. I live alone now that my children have grown up. I write in my sitting-room on a large table, popular with my neighbour’s cats. I start at around 10am, and work until 1pm.
— J.G. Ballard (2000)