November 26th, 2014
Right, listen, stop wasting time reading my blog and click on this link so that, at least once in your life, you get to see the We Are Poets Youtube Teaser. It’s not long – only three and a half minutes. But I guarantee that, unless you’re getting married later or waiting for the birth of your first child, it’ll be the best three and a half minutes of your day. Read the rest of this entry »
November 24th, 2014
Stop! – just think. Where does that word come from? If you’ve ever driven in France you’ll know not to jump in with an answer because on French road signs it doesn’t say ‘Arretez-Vous’ or ‘Cesser,’ it says ‘Stop,’ just like on ours. ‘Stopper’ is a verb in French dictionaries, and you know how fussy those Galls can be. They even have a government institution keeping tabs on their language – the Académie Française, which is almost as intimidating as the British W.I.* Read the rest of this entry »
November 21st, 2014
Back in July, I had a guest blog slot around the time my e-book of short stories was coming out. The Siege and Other Award Winning Stories was only ever meant to be an e-book. I’d put together some of my stories for my students, who often asked to read them and for friends and family. I didn’t expect it to send me on the road to riches as short story collections don’t usually sell particularly well (unless you’re Kate Atkinson or J.K. Rowling) but it would be there for anyone who wanted to read some of my stories.
Now, I don’t know about you but I love ‘proper’ books. Yes, the ones everyone said would be a thing of the past thanks to the explosion of the e-book, which was set to take over the world. Well, not quite but I dug my heels in anyway and vowed to be the last person still reading the book – one which I could sniff (there’s nothing like the fresh scent of a new book), one I could stroke if I wanted to (I love the feel of a new book cover – the raised writing and images and of course, the smoothness of the spine), pages I could turn myself and the satisfaction of closing the book when it’s been read. Read the rest of this entry »
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November 19th, 2014
Back in the late 90’s I was working as an actor with a little theatre company in Brussels. We toured shows around Belgium and France, which sounds really exciting – and it was. But I’d been doing it for ten years and wasn’t exactly earning a fortune, so I was looking for a change.
Moving back to the UK, I really fancied the writers’ life – staying home, on my own, lots of time to think, lots of coffee … sounded like heaven. But tinkering around with a story that eventually grew into an epic fantasy trilogy, I soon realized that, for me, novel writing wasn’t going to pay the bills. So I started the Writers Bureau Journalism Course. It seemed really interesting. Read the rest of this entry »
November 17th, 2014
A couple of months ago I wrote a blog about how hard it can be, just getting things finished. At the time, I’d spotted a competition in Writing Magazine for an adult fairy story, and I’d decided to enter. The competition was going to be my deadline, but whether I won or lost, the intention was to keep blogging about the story. I was working on the assumption that, if a piece isn’t successful on its first submission, there’s always somewhere else to send it. Read the rest of this entry »