October 10, 2016

There’s a huge difference between writing creatively and writing for a practical purpose.  I can sit at my computer faced with a blank page and make up characters and events fairly easily.  I’m not saying that I can write amazing characters and fantastic prose without...

September 24, 2016

I love history.  Last weekend I went for a walk on the moors above Allendale in the north Pennines and I was fascinated by the industrial ruins up there.  If I’d not been a teacher I would have been an archaeologist – I was a huge Time Team fan and I’ve done a couple o...

September 4, 2016

It’s September.  For anybody who has ever worked in education that means only one thing – back to school.  I started teaching in 1990 (that makes me feel really old!) and, since then, there have been very few Septembers when I haven’t had that odd mix of dread and exci...

August 26, 2016

Virginia Woolf said that a woman must have a ‘room of her own’ if she is to write fiction.  I tend to agree that writing is easier if there is quiet and comfort, and I often fantasise about renting a cottage by the sea for a few months and writing a great literary clas...

August 19, 2016

I’ve been obsessing about words lately.  When I started writing my latest novel I decided that two thousand words per day was a reasonable target.  It seemed doable, achievable.  So, for the first few days I managed to top two thousand words.  Then I had a five hundred...

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