‘As you write you can’t escape all the literature you have loved.’ This was one of many wise reflections from Ian McEwan this evening. Another couple of points that struck me particularly: the importance of people’s jobs, so often neglected in novels and yet key to fleshing out  character; and the pleasures of the short  […]

Trends of one sort or another.

Another short list: for my first and probably only ghost story, which bears the peculiar title ‘Potter, Dimity, Lilies.’ When they announced this news, Spooky Tales/What the Dickens? Magazine promised an ebook anthology and – how lovely! – a paper edition as well. Several months and emails later I have discovered that the anthology has […]

Just discovered: a stash of exercise books with essays and stories written in the 1950s. So many gems, thanks to our very old-fashioned teacher who had strict rules:  ‘But’ must never begin a sentence; subjunctive essential; and big words and fancy adverbs and adjectives always welcome. I got red ticks for ‘ irreconcilable’ ‘judicious’ ‘aromatic’  […]

Originally posted on thelittlesummerofthequince:
? The End of the Road Today is a landmark day for me, a day towards which I have been working for over two years. My book As I Walked Out Through Spain in Search of Laurie Lee is officially published today  and available on Amazon.co.uk as a kindle/paperback. ? Birthday Wishes…

This is Down House home of Charles Darwin, a very appropriate destination for a coach load of jolly Oxford Humanists. I learned a lot , e.g. That Darwin walked with his family to church  but stayed outside, and that it was not his scientific  researches that turned him off religion, but the death of his […]

After a run of three small successes with my (unpublished and unagented) novel, whose title Timed Out seems to be becoming ever more resonant, I have done a fair bit of showing off to  friends and  creative writing classmates. The latter often seem over-impressed, and having read or heard their work, I can’t understand why […]

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