Long Shot Books have published my flash fiction, Adapting to Chaos, on their Flyswatter website. Continue reading Read my new story Adapting to Chaos
When I was about 14, I acquired Sylvia Plath’s Collected Poems and it has been my constant companion ever since. One of the ideas which has stayed with me through the years is actually from the introduction written by Ted Hughes, “To my knowledge, she never scrapped any of her poetic efforts. With one or two exceptions, she brought every piece she worked on to … Continue reading Can you fix anything?
I guess I am a contrary person. That’s the only conclusion I can draw about something I have noticed in myself. When I hear a piece of writing advice, usually I think, “Hmm, that’s not what seems to work for me.” I skirt around this new idea and maybe I try it or maybe I refuse it without even giving it a go. (Yes. *eyeroll* … Continue reading Thanks a million for the writing advice
Blogging was supposed to help my writing. That’s why I started this. I was also supposed to write every day. However, what I find is, every time I have an idea that I want to explore, it winds up in a novel. Novels consume ideas. Sometimes the idea is slightly disguised as something else: writing might become art, for instance, but the core philosophy or … Continue reading The Problem With Blogging
I’m going to be controversial here and suggest that those six-word stories that are all the rage are usually not really stories at all. They are a collection of six words. What makes a story a story? Back in a previous life, I used to teach English in a middle school. Every year there was a competition to write 50-word stories. These were incredibly hard … Continue reading How Short Is Your Story?
I now use notebooks for everything, because they are so deliciously portable. However, there are several downsides: 1) I don’t know how many words I’ve written (and I quite like novels to have chapters of similar lengths). 2) I lose things. It turns out that I don’t write linearly. I thought I did, so this is a surprising new development. This means whole sections go … Continue reading The Problem With Notebooks
If you’ve ever had a sneaking suspicion that reading fiction is good for you, now is the time to feel smug. I put it to you, my dear friends, without any hidden agenda*, that reading fiction is the best pursuit for you because it has the greatest number of benefits of any other activity you could engage in. In a month in which many people … Continue reading The Fiction Panacea
The problem with January is that it’s the most depressing month. It’s dark, it’s cold, it’s gloomy. Winter has gone on for too long already and all the Christmas pudding has been eaten. (Just kidding! What would life be without a secret stash of Christmas puddings and the ability to make brandy butter? Recipe available on request.) You go right ahead and enjoy your optimism … Continue reading The Problem With January
It will not have escaped your notice that we are now in 2020 (even if you are still writing 2019 erroneously on various documents). This is, traditionally, the time for New Year’s resolutions. It’s a bit gimmicky but, if it works for you, harness that power. New year; new writing. This is very likely the year for your writing to grow and flourish. In order … Continue reading Go Get ‘Em, Tiger!
Once, I lived at the bottom of a hill and, on a particularly snowy morning, as I left my house and walked up that hill, I slipped back half a pace for every step. I told myself it didn’t matter how long it took to reach my destination, what mattered was that I tried and succeeded. On I went step, slip, step, up and up, … Continue reading The Snowy Hill