Muse, News and Views

Happy Bloomsday

Bloomsday celebrates James Joyce’s Ulysses. The story takes place takes place on a single day: June 16th 1904 in Dublin. Ulysses follows the life and thoughts of Leopold Bloom and … Continue reading

June 16, 2016 · 2 Comments

HAPPY JUNE 16th – a special day

A bit of background (from a 2013 post I wrote on the subject) Bloomsday celebrates Leopold Bloom, the main character in James Joyce’s Ulysses. The story takes place takes place … Continue reading

June 16, 2015 · Leave a comment

What is a short story?

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 17, 2013 · 29 Comments

Happy Bloomsday — quotes from JAMES JOYCE on Christopher Columbus and his own immortality

Christopher Columbus, as everyone knows, is honoured by posterity because he was the last to discover America. I’ve put in so many enigmas and puzzles that it will keep the … Continue reading

June 16, 2013 · 1 Comment


    A short lived but very influential poetic movement that flourished both sides of the Atlantic around WWI. It was a reaction to the  abstract language used by poets … Continue reading

April 10, 2013 · 8 Comments

A is for ALL IN A DAY

We tend to think of a novel having a big landscape with a great sweep of characters and the story told over weeks, years, even centuries. But some writers have … Continue reading

April 1, 2013 · 19 Comments

USING MUSIC AS A PLOT DEVICE – extract from a creative writing exercise in Back to Creative Writing School

James Joyce’s The Dead has been called by some critics the best short story ever written. Indeed when I was studying for a Masters in Creative Writing a tutor apologised … Continue reading

March 11, 2013 · Leave a comment

Monday Creative Writing Exercise because it’s a good way to start the week TITLES

Titles are hard to get right. The easy option is to go for a label – Sunday Afternoon, The Dream, A Walk in the Park and there are excellent precedents. … Continue reading

January 21, 2013 · 8 Comments