REVIEW: Farangi Girl, Ashley Dartnell

This story I have literally had for YEARS. I read a review of Farangi Girl in a magazine back when it was published in 2011 and somehow ended up with two copies of this book and yet went six years before reading it…how is that even possible? But finally just before Christmas, I read Farangi…

REVIEW: My Name Is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Strout

This was one of those books that I had seen around Waterstones a few times, but never got round to buying. But, as part of my HUGE post Christmas book haul (video to come soon, promise), I finally bought My Name is Lucy Barton. All I really knew about the book was that it is…

REVIEW: City of Friends by Joanna Trollope

I have to admit that part of the reason I bought this book was it’s beautiful cover. The image just looked friendly, like the type of book I would want to read after a long day. I have read a few of Joanna Trollope’s novels and I am yet to be disappointed. This book tells…

FICTION: Music 2 – Performance and Cocktails, Stereophonics

This is part two of my project in which I write a series of vignettes inspired by an album. Each vignette is a song. I had to pick a Stereophonics album for this because they are a band that had a massive influence on me and my family. Many of my memories are attached to music…

FICTION: Body

You’re walking along the high street and it’s a grey day and you’re wearing your coat but you’ve unbuttoned it because you’re always too warm now. Perhaps you’re dreaming about getting away, a bit of sunshine, maybe you’ll even leave your husband behind, leave everything here.  Suddenly, you’re falling.  For a second you think you’ve…

The Rewrite – Tips and Tricks

Last year was the first time ever that I actually completed nanowrimo. I wrote over 50,000 words in a month after three previous attempts. Every day I allocated three hours to write at least 1250 words and I actually managed it. I was lucky in that I had an idea already. In the workshops for…

SHORT FICTION: Sleep

I am not a good sleeper. Drifting off into a restful eight hours has never come naturally to me. I clamber into bed at night with a notebook and pen and a choice of paperbacks to keep me going. “Do you really need all of those?” “Of course.” It had become our nightly ritual. I…

FICTION: Ironing

This is a piece that I wrote during a writing workshop. During the workshop we were asked to create to characters who know each other or are related. We then had to write a conversation between these two characters in which they argue about a normal, every day thing, but are in fact arguing about…

How to keep writing when you’re travelling.

As I mentioned in my last post I am currently away from home. I’m in Toronto at the minute and will be travelling to Niagara Falls, Michigan and New York over the next two weeks. I don’t know about other writers but I’m a creature of habit when it comes to my writing. I like…

Top Tips for Writing a Novel

For those of us who dream of seeing our novels on the bookshelves of Waterstone’s and in the hands of readers who aren’t related to us, the biggest mystery is how to write and keep writing. The first moment of inspiration, when we have a bright new idea, feels like that really is all we…