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June 2nd, 2015

WW1-187-blogThis week I’ve got not just one YouTube clip but four for your delectation!

I studied the poets of the First World War for ‘A’ Level (more years ago than I care to remember). Last year I finally got to visit the area where the men writing them had fought. Visiting the battlefields, the craters, the cemeteries full of row upon row of graves and attending the ceremony held each evening at the Menin Gate in Ypres made them even more poignant. Read the rest of this entry »




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You Pays Your Money And You Takes Your Choice

May 26th, 2015

WattBlog-BlogHave you come across Wattpad? I just discovered it a couple of days ago and … I’m in two minds. Where I can see there’s definitely something interesting going on, I’m not really sure it’s for me.

Wattpad is a Canadian based story-sharing website, like a Facebook or Youtube for writers. Stories and poems are shared in over fifty languages, and the stat’s for membership and reading are quite impressive: 40 million users per month with an average user session of thirty minutes. Readers are encouraged to post comments about work they’ve read, writers have profile pages where you can message them privately, and there are a number of Forums where both writers and readers join in extended conversations. Generally, from what I can see, people are serialising novels and putting them up one chapter at a time. Some attract thousands of readers, and one I noticed – Flawed by someone calling themselves bnflan has been read an enormous 2, 410, 414 times. Read the rest of this entry »




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Nine Nifty Nuggets For a Perfect Poem

December 8th, 2014

Nifty-Nuggets-BlogI wish I was a poet. You may think I’m daft, but to my mind, poets are up at the top of the writing tree. Me? I’m a jobbing scribe, fine with blogs, stories and articles. But poetry … that’s special. Read the rest of this entry »




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The Limerick Song!

December 1st, 2014

iron-press-blogOur newsletter, Freelance Market News, holds a monthly competition for subscribers and one of the most popular is when we ask people to write a limerick. I can certainly understand it because they’re short – and they’re fun.

Limericks originated in the 1700s and were made even more popular by Edward Lear in the Nineteenth Century. They have a very definite rhyming scheme (aabba); often feature a place name (There was a young woman from London…) and are normally both funny and a little risqué! Read the rest of this entry »




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Are You a Highlighter?

November 28th, 2014

pray-blog (2)First, thanks to Esther for last Friday’s post. We wish her well with sales of The Siege!

I was out Christmas shopping last weekend and made a donation to The Salvation Army. In return I was given  a copy of The War Cry. Glancing  through it when I got home I saw an article on e-readers and highlights that people make when they’re reading a novel. This got me thinking.

The short article was very cleverly targeted, starting off with a subject that might interest anyone, not just a religious person. It looked at how many times the opening passage from Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice had been highlighted – to date 4491! And just in case anyone could have forgotten it: Read the rest of this entry »




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