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Writing As Therapy

April 1st, 2020

First, thanks to Mick for last week’s blog. I know everything seems so uncertain at the moment and I suspect that lots of us are feeling rather distracted and unable to concentrate on anything other than making sure we have a fully stocked freezer, and that those we  love are well and not in financial difficulty.

But if you can concentrate for a few hours every day, then this really is a perfect time to settle down and write. So, I’m not going to use this post as an excuse to witter on about Coronavirus or air my views about the government’s response to it. Instead, I’m going to suggest some outlets for your writing that you might want to consider. Read the rest of this entry »




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What’s The Worst That Can Happen?

March 25th, 2020

Like most things in life, writing requires motivation and discipline. Regardless of how good the idea is, floating around in your head, if you don’t find the time to write it down, your chance of success is zero.

Starting out on a writing course can be a daunting experience, regardless of age or background. It doesn’t take much to lose confidence, which can have a detrimental effect on motivation. That can happen when you first start writing magazine articles and submitting them to editors. Some take weeks, or even months to reply, whilst others don’t reply at all. It’s easy to become discouraged, I know at times I was. The key is not to take it personally. To keep on writing. Sometimes you find success is just around the corner. Read the rest of this entry »




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Keeping Boredom At Bay

March 16th, 2020

First, thanks to Ruth for last week’s blog. I love the humorous way she writes and I think her suggestion of working with a friend is a really good one. Especially in these difficult times when our movements might become more restricted. It’s something that you can do from the comfort of your own home via your laptop or tablet.

And talking about movements being restricted, I  may not be in the 70+ range but I’m gearing up for having to curtail my activities a little. And for me, that means finding some great big, whopping books to read. At the moment I’m reading The Devil That Danced by Aminatta Forna. It’s a beautiful, lyrical book about her childhood in Sierra Leone, the murder of her father by the regime and the country as it has been recently with all its troubles and bloodshed. At 500-plus pages it’s a very satisfying read! I’ve read a couple of her novels, too – The Memory of Love and The Hired Man – and they don’t disappoint. Read the rest of this entry »




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Flash of Inspiration

March 6th, 2020

My children’s novel has been quietly simmering on a back burner for eight years. Last year I decided a writing course would help stir it up. Check it wasn’t sticking to the bottom of the pan (whilst working on my extended metaphors). So I enrolled on a Writers Bureau course, and seven modules in, I still look forward to every assignment. But the course has stirred up more than I’d anticipated. It’s given me an itch to write just for the sake of writing. This is how I found flash fiction. And I’m a little bit besotted.

Six months ago I wouldn’t have been able to tell you what flash fiction was. So where has this infatuation come from? For me, it’s the ability of the genre to capture fleeting inspiration and either hold it within its tiny frame, or let it grow into something new. Read the rest of this entry »




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Are You Considering Self-publishing?

February 28th, 2020

First, thanks to Esther for last week’s blog. I enjoy reading both ‘proper’ books and e-books.  As I’m sure I’ve said before, for me it’s all about the most cost-effective way of getting my hands on what I want to read, whether it’s physically visiting my local library, using their library app, browsing in a good bookshop or downloading a book from Amazon. But I do tend to have a preference for my Kindle when I’m reading in bed. As Esther said – less strain on the arms!

I know that even young children are now savvy when it comes to tablets and phones and there are so many channels on the TV fighting for their attention. But I still get a buzz out of the fact that my 14-month-old grandson loves his books. He likes nothing better than making his choice and then staggering over with his favourite picture book so that we can sit down and enjoy it together. Let’s hope it lasts. Read the rest of this entry »




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