Sunset ~ by Maressa Mortimer

Gorgeous sunset, Pixabay image, with colours and light intact.

 I don’t know about your part of the world, but we’ve had some amazing sunsets recently. We’re quite high up, with a gorgeous view into the alley and up the next hill, with the sunset just beyond the hill. It gives you the sort of view you find in books, where the dying light, fanned in orange of every hue across the sky, strokes the warm stone house, the pink roses nodding their heads, ready for bed. That kind of thing.

 So whenever I notice the sunset, I take a picture. Or five. The result is dreadful. It either looks nearly night or just a white sky. Very disappointing, but so beautiful I take a few more, just in case this one turns out better. Years ago, we stayed in the Alps. I came home with hundreds of snow-covered pictures. No idea what to do with those. At least with digital pictures, you can simply delete them after a while.

Writing can be like that. I often end up with very similar scenes or dialogues. Of course, real life can be like that too. “Lovely weather isn’t it?” “It’s so pretty around here, have you noticed?” Of course, it has been noticed, for this conversation has been had five times this morning already. But it makes for a comfortable journey, enjoying the view and each other’s company. After the beautiful weather comments, companionable silence hangs in the car again. It gives a certain atmosphere.

Sunset from our garden.

Sometimes it feels wrong to take out the small talk from books, as it’s not very natural to be driving along, without sighing about the views every few minutes. Thrillers might be the exception, as maybe it’s less common to make small talk when on the run from a serial killer, who knows?  My editor doesn’t keep those conversations in, and I have to agree, although it’s fun to add silly conversations and easier to picture the characters ambling along.

On the very odd occasions when I had a scene in mind and planned a chapter, I found that all small talk, description and easy flow disappears from my writing. That’s frowned upon by my editor as well as it’s not natural and smooth. Again, I agree, for the paragraphs leading up to the scene I had in mind can be rushed and skip over details. I’m not into details anyway and have to remind myself to add colour and shape to characters and their possessions.

So now and then there will be a beautiful sunset in my books or a snow-filled scene. Just not as many as are saved on my phone, I suppose. It was a stunning sunset last night though. All pinks and swirls, with a blue sky. Really pretty. Maybe I should have taken a picture to show you.

Maressa Mortimer is Dutch but lives in the beautiful Cotswolds, England with her husband and four (adopted) children. Maressa is a homeschool mum as well as a pastor’s wife, so her writing has to be done in the evening when peace and quiet descend on the house once more. She loves writing Christian fiction, as it’s a great way to explore faith in daily life. Because of her interest in writing, Maressa is part of Creativity Matters: Find Your Passion For Writing, an anthology encouraging people to write.

Her debut novel, Sapphire Beach, was published in December 2019, and her first self published novel, Walled City, came out in December 2020, followed by Viking Ferry, a novella. Beyond the Hills is the second book in the Elabi Chronicles, and was released in 2021, followed by stand-alone novel Burrowed, released in 2022. All of Maressa’s books are available from her website,, Amazon or local bookshops.


Joy Margetts said…
I so equate with this! My photo of our glorious golden full moon over a shimmering silver speckled sea... pinprick white dot on a black background! But I love the everyday beautiful things and the conversations they spark, as you say they are companionable. I think a little bit of the ordinary in our characters is fine. They have to be real after all. The odd joke here and there! Great post (you are good at these!)

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