Solitude is necessary for writers. We need to mull, to wool-gather, to imagine what ifs and to settle down our wild ideas. We need big lakes of solitude - vast and wide - filled with the cool clear water of being without other. We need places for our ideas to form and our imaginary towns to fill with characters. We need to hear ourselves think.
I suppose, like anything, solitude needs to be in balance. Too much and I could go stir crazy, too little and I get crabby and snap at innocent family members. And we get habituated to a certain amount of it.
Once, after I had lived alone for several years and been without a partner for ten, I went on a trip with a load of people - it was to the Dublin Marathon and we travelled in a group and stayed in rooms together and rah rahed it all over the place. A dear friend flew over and we went down to the Dingle Peninsula after the race for a lovely trip. And the third morning or so I thought I'd go mad for a bit of solitude. It wasn't my friend - we'd travelled lots of times together - before and since - it was the contrast of living so alone and then being with so many. I just needed to grab my journal and go off to a restaurant for breakfast on my own. She understood as she lives alone too.
Solitude - dear solitude - too much and it is a torture - not enough and we die of thirst for it.
the mountains in their solitude...from my recent trip