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Dispelling the Writing Blues

January 26th, 2018

You’ve probably not escaped the fact that the third Monday in January has been christened ‘Blue Monday’ by the PR industry. Why blue? Apparently, because the weather is usually awful, our bank balances are depleted, we’ve already failed to keep most of our New Year resolutions and our motivation has dropped to an all-time low (make a note of that last one).

They advise just giving into it and having a ‘duvet day’ instead of facing up to the depressing facts. Well, I didn’t quite do that but I did spend more time than usual browsing the internet. And I’ve come up with a couple of sites that, hopefully, will help you get motivated again and put the January blues behind you. Read the rest of this entry »




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What Publishers Really, Really Want

January 19th, 2018

First, thanks to Victoria for last week’s post. She’s absolutely right, you know! I can’t count the number of times that I’ve finished a piece of writing, checked it thoroughly, checked it again, uploaded it… and then spotted a mistake. So, always put it to one side for a few days (or a few hours if you’re really up against a deadline) and then read it through again just to be on the safe side.

I’ve been reading through the February issue of Writing Magazine which has a regular column called ‘I wish I’d known…’ where they ask a well-known writer that question. This month they were talking to the historical novelist Victoria Cornwall who had published a couple of novels herself prior to getting a contract with a commercial publisher. She had this to say: Read the rest of this entry »




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The Importance Of Walking Away

January 12th, 2018

We’ve all been there. The thrill of typing ‘The End,’ the realisation that it’s perfect. It’s time to show it to the world.

STOP! Step away from the Send button. Don’t print it yet. It may not be as ready as you think.

I know it’s hard. You’ve been working on this for weeks, months, maybe even years. You’re finally finished and can’t wait for the rewards: first place in the competition, centre spread in the magazine, the big book deal, the lavish reviews. Read the rest of this entry »




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A Literary Television Treat

January 5th, 2018

First, happy New Year! Here we are at the start of 2018 having been lashed by storms Dylan and Eleanor. I can’t say that I’m really sorry as it’s given me the chance to spend a bit more time curled up with some good books and the last of the chocolate biscuits rather than having to go out into the garden and start dismantling the Christmas reindeer.

This year my husband decided to make reindeer from logs that we’d sawn off trees over the previous year, and give them collars of shiny red metal. I think they’re great, but the local wildlife wasn’t as impressed. We have some very fat, very bold squirrels. They’re not frightened of me, or my husband, but they certainly gave the Rudolphs a wide berth. I loved watching them edge their way around keeping a very beady eye open for any movement. At least I know what to put near the bird feeders in future to keep them at a distance. Perhaps we need to invent some all-season mythical beast that we can use to keep them in check! Squirrels are cute, but not when they’re eating all the nuts and digging up my bulbs for a quick snack. Read the rest of this entry »




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