All at Sea

Literally! I’m writing this in the mid Atlantic, where I’m on a press trip for the travel pages of www.dailymail.co.uk so intermittent posting for the next few days, but worth it in pursuit of a wonderful story!In the meantime, I’m trying to think of...

A Small Slice of Research Lite

I love a good bit of research to get me going with a book, whether it’s set in the present or the past, whether it’s fiction or non-fiction, digging around for information is a great stimulus of the creative juices.  Things that I unearth can often help in...

Breaking the Spell

As a writer, you’re an illusionist: you create brave new worlds for your reader and go to great lengths to make them seem as real and as plausible as possible — that is what writing good fiction is all about. The subversive in me is interested in the...

The Laxative Powers of Catharsis?

Weirdly, my dictionary (a lovely old Chambers that my mum and dad gave me in 1989) defines catharsis as purgative medicine having the power of cleansing the bowels – they missed that bit out in my drama degree.  It does go on to say that it can also mean the...

Literature, Lycanthropy and Howling at the Moon

I love Margaret Atwood when she is slightly off the wall. She once told someone I knew to bury the names of the people who frightened her in a hole in the garden, something I’ve considered doing myself, although it would have to be more of a pit in my case. Here...
Free Range Writing

Free Range Writing

I’m having a break on the coast of Cornwall, so my posts (when I can manage them) are shorter than usual… Here’s a pic of some free range eggs, West Country style. I like the chromatic echoes of brown and fawn and cream and palest blue, colours that...

Normal Service Will Resume…

…but at the moment I’m hidden away in a remote spot without access to the internet – yes, such places still exist and the breathtakingly lovely Helford Estuary in southernmost Cornwall is one of them. It’s an inspiring place in which to think...

I’ve Just Killed My Darlings…

….because that’s what they tell you to do when you are writing – cut the parts you like the best because you may be blind to their failings or including them for the wrong reasons. The section I’ve eviscerated is the opening of my new novel: The...