My Writing Life

Not good enough

Not good enough

Imagine you're a baker, opening up your shop for your first day in business. Potential new customers file in, eager to sample your breads, pastries and cakes. They walk up to the counter and gaze at the plate of buns. But the buns are lumpy, disfigured and...

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The Moon or the moon?

The Moon or the moon?

One of the things you learn as you continue to write (and read) is that there are very, very few hard and fast rules when it comes to the finer points of the language.Take our natural satellite. My instinct is to refer to it as the moon, but a case can be made that...

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The demon drink

The demon drink

No, not that drink. I'm talking about caffeine. I don't know about you, but I have an uneasy relationship with tea - by which I mean the black tea we Brits generally drink. I came down with some kind of virus a week ago which made my mind foggy, but even...

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Character name generator

Character name generator

Okay, I confess, I was going to name a Russian character Vlad. I don't know about you, but giving side-characters plausible names is a bit of a mission. But the wonderful folk at Reedsy have made it just a little easier with their Character Name Generator page. On...

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Wish I’d Known Then Podcast

Wish I’d Known Then Podcast

Wish I'd Known Then is one of my absolute favourite podcasts for writers. In this episode, Sara Rosett and Jami Albright interview the inspirational Nana Malone on her author life and her experiences as an author of colour.Heartily recommended for a joyful, funny...

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It’s all about the voice

It’s all about the voice

Sometimes writing flows freely, and sometimes it's like a clogged up stream, and all you can do is to keep trudging on in your wellies. Yet, after over 40 novels, I've noticed that I almost never get stuck on dialogue. And that dialogue is what I enjoy writing...

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Change in perspective

Change in perspective

I was in a funk yesterday. I'd been writing some pretty exciting action, but my current point of view character had just been knocked unconscious. And, to be honest, I was getting a bit fed up of her company.So, I had to think about what to do next. Did I begin...

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Writing the Deluge series

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The Ten Minute Author: Writing books a word at a time

The Ten Minute Author: Writing books a word at a time

It was January 19th 2017 and I was sitting in the car waiting for my wife to come out of a hospital appointment. I was reading on my Kindle to while away the hour or so. I'd heard about this particular book on a podcast (I remember the book, but not which podcast it...

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2019 Author Roundup

2019 Author Roundup

2019 was my most productive year in every way, most importantly in the number of new novels published. Some of the words written in 2019 will be published in 2020, but then the first two novels of 2019 were written the year before so it's a case of swings and...

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