…even memoir can work with this treatment, and a story or poem always seems very immediate and urgent if written this way. Although having said that, I could be lying, right? Continue reading 42 is the Right Answer, Day 3
Remember to think of who, why, where, what, when, how?
Consider using the different senses to capture the scene – sight, smell, taste, touch, sound. Continue reading 42 is the Right Answer, Day 2
I know it is early days – this is only a nomination before the drawing up of a shortlist to be published in May. Still. Continue reading Forward Thinking
Occasionally I’ll resort to going through old notebooks for inspiration, and I’ll sometimes find little gems I’ve forgotten about, pieces of writing I always intended going back to but never did. That’s why I keep all my old notebooks. It’s not that I’m a hoarder or anything… Continue reading Notebooks revisited
…I remember waking up in the middle of the night and going to check my emails (again) because I couldn’t quite believe that had happened in real life… Continue reading Does Winner Takes All – or Nothing?
Have you ever noticed the dictionary sandwiches ‘writhe’ between ‘writer’ and ‘writing’? Continue reading Horses, Camels and Collaborative Poems
Inspiration is a funny old thing – one minute it is there slapping you in the face, insisting you write, write and then write some more, next it has disappeared into the ether without a trace and you are left wondering what on earth to write about. And whatever made you (me) think writing for publication was a good idea? The secret is of course, to carry on regardless, ignoring the helpless feeling of being uninspired, and just empty your head onto paper. Messy, I know, but the muse often has a way of creeping back to take a look … Continue reading A Gloom of One’s Own
Trying to find new ways to say old things can be a bit wearing. In my case, wearing on the old computer keyboard. My laptop was bought with the winnings from a short story competition in…damn, was it really three years ago? Anyway, I’ve worn the face off some of the keys. A R E S T to be precise. I don’t touch-type, but I know my way around a keyboard, so it is no real bother for me. I’m even trying to squeeze a poem out of the scenario, all about naked keys, worn to the bone. I think … Continue reading Filling in the Gaps
Retreat. The word conjures images of battle-bashed battalions backing off, or of a cowed religious heading for the caves of a hermit life. Or even tea-and-dry-toast navel-gazing and prayer on an island for a weekend. But a writer’s retreat? Well, that’s different. Think stylish, distraction-free space and time to write. So, in need of just that, some creative headspace away from home, I headed for County Down in Northern Ireland last week. I could have chosen a remote seaside cottage from Booking.com, but it is unlikely I’d have enjoyed it as much as my stay in the River Mill Reading … Continue reading A Bolthole for Writers
I’ll cut to the chase here and tell you I attend four different writers’ groups. I also turn up at workshops, seminars, lectures, readings, any event with writing as the theme. Some are fun, some aren’t, but I invariably learn something – or more pertinently, I write something I wouldn’t have done otherwise. You might wonder how I have time, but two of the groups are fortnightly, and only one of the others meets weekly. For me, this is all about mixing with ‘my people’, the ones who get it, the ones I don’t have to explain the writing compulsion … Continue reading Writers’ Groups? What’s the Point?