BRIDGET WHELAN writer

August is archive month. Posts from the past

American literary journal offers an international fellowship to flash fiction writers

SmokeLong Quarterly is inviting applications for the 2018 Kathy Fish Fellowship. SmokeLong Quarterly celebrates its 14th birthday this year with the aim of publishing the best flash fiction on the … Continue reading

September 4, 2017 · Leave a comment

Why we bother with words… the last item from the archive

I’ve discovered that three main theories attempt to explain why language developed. Supporters of the BOW-WOW theory are convinced that humans first began to communicate by imitating the sound of … Continue reading

August 31, 2017 · Leave a comment

Literary Names (and the seductive qualities of research) Writing article number 7 from the archives

This post is really about the dangers of being seduced by research. It all started with a tiny snippet of irrelevant information on twitter telling me that a popular girl’s … Continue reading

August 29, 2017 · 11 Comments

Unreliable Narrators Writing Article Number 6 from the Archive

As readers we tend to be on the side of the narrator. We trust what he or she  says – we have no one else to tell us what happened … Continue reading

August 28, 2017 · Leave a comment

RHYTHM IN PROSE Writing Article Number 5 from the Archive

Rhythm isn’t the sole preserve of poets or musicians – prose writers can also be lyrical if we write with our ear as well as our hand. This short passage … Continue reading

August 27, 2017 · Leave a comment

FLASHBACKS Writing Article Number 4 from the Archive

Flashbacks in literature are scenes within the chronological narrative that reveal events  before the story began. In a novel the ‘now’ of the story might be about two old friends … Continue reading

August 26, 2017 · Leave a comment

REVIEWS Writing article number 3 from the archive

Reviewers have probably never been so important. They have always been the life blood of an author’s career, but they are no longer the sole preserve of the ‘professional’, the … Continue reading

August 25, 2017 · Leave a comment

WHAT IS A SHORT STORY? Writing Article Number 2 from the Archive

Someone asked me recently to define a short story. I could understand her difficulty because it’s much easier to say what’s it’s not. It’s not an idea that could have … Continue reading

August 24, 2017 · 8 Comments

BACK STORY Writing Article Number 1 from the Archive

Different writing disciplines aren’t locked into tight compartments. If you’re writing a novel I think it helps to read poetry for the richness of the language and the way it … Continue reading

August 23, 2017 · 8 Comments

What do you call songwriters? Poets with music in their pen

“… when you’re talking about the music of a country, you’re talking more or less about the soundtrack of a country, the soundtrack by which people’s lives are lived,” Tyehimba … Continue reading

August 11, 2017 · 5 Comments

Creative Writing Exercise Number 7 from the Archive

When I’m teaching I often use this exercise in the first week of term and I thought others might like to try it. Varying the length of a sentence is … Continue reading

August 8, 2017 · Leave a comment

Creative Writing Exercise Number 6 from the Archive

We need to make the most of the summer so today’s exercise is very simple: go outside to write whenever you have the chance. But do it in a way … Continue reading

August 7, 2017 · 4 Comments

Creative Writing Exercise Number 5 from the Archive

Bestselling crime writer Elmore Leonard, who died last month aged 87, had 10 Rules for Writing. Number three was Never use a verb other than “said” to carry dialogue. The … Continue reading

August 6, 2017 · 2 Comments

Creative Writing Exercise Number 4 from the Archive

This is a lucky dip romance…. Pick your numbers and you’ll have your two characters and what brings them together…but no scrolling! It’s much more fun if you do this … Continue reading

August 5, 2017 · Leave a comment