Category Archives: Writing

My Top Ten Books for a Reading Group!

Have you ever been in a Reading Group? I haven’t, but I was recently asked for my top ten Reading Group Books – interesting question. It made me think. So I’ve reproduced them here – in reverse order. Would love … Continue reading

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The Long and Winding Road – to a Book Deal!

‘Whatever the struggle – continue the climb – it may only be one step to the summit.’ Diana Westlake This is a quote I keep over my desk – because blimey it’s so true of writing. The road to success … Continue reading

Posted in Book Deals, Inspiration, News, Writing | Tagged , , | 12 Comments

Creating Characters – How well do you know your imaginary people?

Sometimes a character comes into my head fully formed. Sometimes they are shadowy. Sometimes they are shy like real people and I have to get to know them slowly.  Interviewing them is good. These 21 questions are one of my … Continue reading

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Writing Courses – are they worth it?

There are so many writing courses around these days. Universities run them, publishers run them, magazines run them. In fact every Tom, Dick and Harry (if you’ll excuse the cliche) runs writing courses. Even the smallest town has a literary … Continue reading

Posted in Short stories for magazines, Tips on writing, Woman's Weekly, Writing, Writing conferences & schools | Tagged , , | 11 Comments

Tips on Writing Flash Fiction

Flash Fiction is a term that can be applied to anything under 1000 words but more usually it’s shorter. For the purposes of this blog let’s say between 300 and 500 words. It shouldn’t be anecdotal, i.e. it should still … Continue reading

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Five Tips to Stay Inspired With Your Writing

Got an idea for a story? Write more than one opening paragraph – it takes the pressure off having to get it perfect. Keep writing openings until you feel the inspiration kick in.  This can sometimes take me a while. … Continue reading

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The Short Story Writer’s Toolshed

The Short Story Writer’s Toolshed was first published as a series in Writer’s Forum. I later decided to compile it into a handy little book. Here is an extract I thought you might like. How The Toolshed Works Every writer … Continue reading

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The Biggest Occupational Hazard of Being a Writer!

Today I’m writing about the biggest occupational hazard of being a writer.  No, I’m not talking about writer’s bottom! Although that is a hazard, I have to say. Especially when combined with Easter and all the chocolate I’ve recently consumed! … Continue reading

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Literary Devices and their Use in Fiction

We’ve been talking about literary devices in my classes, which, perhaps oddly for a writing class, we rarely do. We’re usually focusing on dialogue or characterization or some other element of short stories. So here are just three literary devices … Continue reading

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Is Your Writing Smelly Enough?

Using the senses in your writing, especially the sense of smell, really helps to take the reader into your story.  However, it’s just as easy  to be cliché with smells as with any other writing so choose carefully and be … Continue reading

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