Why is writing important to you and why do you think it's an important medium for the world? I retired early from the U. S. Foreign Service in order to devote myself to writing full-time. It is a passion and source of immense pleasure. I can't speak for others, but the written word enables me to engage my imagination more fully than any other source of communication or entertainment.

What are your tried and tested remedies to cure writer's block? Keep writing. Stick to a schedule and keep at it, even if you only put a paragraph on a page in an entire day. I've always found that the day after I have a touch of writer's block, the words flow better than ever--assuming I've stuck to my routine.

What is your favorite time to write? I treat writing like a regular job--I write from 9 to 4 daily, five days a week.

What's the best piece of writing advice you've ever received and would like to impart to other writers? Don't try to write and edit your work simultaneously. They're two entirely different thought processes.

What excites you most about being a writer in today's age? Frankly, I would rather have been a writer in an earlier time, when books were more widely appreciated.

Peter E. Cozzens's Tecumseh and the Prophet: The Shawnee Brothers Who Defied a Nation is out October 27 with Knopf.