for writers and readers….

Can writing be taught? And what do writing teachers teach?

Originally posted on Nail Your Novel:
The other night I was watching The Rewrite, in which a Hollywood scriptwriter reluctantly becomes a writing teacher. In the early part of the…

February 23, 2015 · 5 Comments

“There are only four kinds of readers…” Quotes for Writers (and people who like quotes)

There are only four kinds of readers. The first is like the hour-glass; their reading being as the sand, it runs in and it runs out, and leaves no vestige … Continue reading

February 22, 2015 · 3 Comments

Seven books that convinced me making up stories was a fine thing to do….

On Fridays I am returning to some of my favourite posts from the past. To paraphrase BBC radio: this is your chance to read again… Alice in Wonderland and Through … Continue reading

February 20, 2015 · Leave a comment

What’s your best chance of being published RIGHT NOW?

Last week an article in Vanity Fair website suggested that on the back of the Fifty Shades of Grey film erotic fiction was still a good way of convincing a … Continue reading

February 17, 2015 · 14 Comments


If you have a minute – maximum 90 seconds – can you fill out this very short survey? It’s about the way the 2012 London Paralympics were portrayed. In a deliberate … Continue reading

February 16, 2015 · 5 Comments

How to get your character right by Ethan Canin – Quotes for Wtiters (and people who like quotes)

Don’t write about a character. Become that character, and then write your story. ETHAN CANIN photo credit: Steven Pisano via photopin cc

February 15, 2015 · 4 Comments

Valentine’s Day – love without the claptrap….

The origins: The Oxford University Press Blog cites three possible sources. Valentine of Terni, martyred circa AD 197, for his Christianity. Another possible origin, Valentine of Rome, circa AD 289, … Continue reading

February 14, 2015 · 4 Comments

A night to remember….FROM THE ARCHIVE

On Fridays I am returning to some of my favourite posts from the past. To paraphrase BBC radio: this is your chance to read again… In 1963 the British novelist … Continue reading

February 13, 2015 · 4 Comments

DID you know…that Charles Darwin and Abraham Lincoln were born on the same day and the same year… 206 years ago today

On 12 February 1809, Charles Darwin was born in Shropshire to a wealthy family: his father was Dr Robert Darwin and  his mother Susannah was the daughter of Josiah Wedgwood, … Continue reading

February 12, 2015 · 2 Comments

LITERARY SNOBBERY and the harm it does…

Scottish writer SARA SHERIDAN argues that literary snobbery is a destructive and divisive force. She defines it as a prevailing attitude that prefers male authors to female, sees war as … Continue reading

February 10, 2015 · 3 Comments

There’s one special quality your best writing always has – Arthur Miller. Quotes for Writers (and people who like quotes)

The best work that anybody ever writes is the work that is on the verge of embarrassing him, always. – Arthur Miller photo credit: supermattzor via photopin cc

February 8, 2015 · Leave a comment

A simple writing exercise that packs a punch FROM THE ARCHIVES

I’m recovering from two total replacement knee operations and everything is going well. A bionic new me will be sashaying out in the summer, maybe even doing a bit of … Continue reading

February 6, 2015 · 7 Comments

A brutally honest book log – January 2015

I’m not sure if I will keep this up all year, but I’ve wanted to keep a record of what I’ve been reading for some time. Why brutally honest? Because … Continue reading

February 4, 2015 · 2 Comments

More literary insults…and this time it’s personal

A harsh review got an equally harsh retort this week, not from the author (authors are always told to keep quiet about bad reviews), but a clearly angry man who … Continue reading

February 2, 2015 · 7 Comments