It’s There in Black and White – and Grey?

We are complex beings and our behaviour frequently lands us in complicated situations, something you should try and reflect in your fiction writing. Things are rarely cut and dried in the real world, so it is a good idea to tie some intriguingly complicated knots in...
What You Can Learn from John Lanchester…

What You Can Learn from John Lanchester…

Well, loads of things, of course, he’s a brilliant writer.  But having just read Capital, which is set in a single London street and anatomises the effects of the 2008 financial crisis on its inhabitants, what struck me most was the way in which he was able to...
What To Leave Out?

What To Leave Out?

I think I’ve mentioned elsewhere in my blog (several times — avoid repetition, Ed) that I’m interested in the gaps and spaces in a creative work; in what is alluded to, rather than what is spelt out.  This is particularly true when it comes to...

Using Your Influence

Writers work on their readers in many ways, their wonders to perform. You can convey information directly, by telling the reader that something is so; you can allude to it symbolically and get them to work it out for themselves, but sometimes it can be quite fun, and...

Characterisation – What’s Not to Like?

The protagonist of the book I’m working on at the moment is a middle-aged man who is struggling (and not always succeeding) to be more than the sum total of the disappointments life has visited upon him.: his marriage ended in divorce and in the process he...