I am currently writing two novels at once. The first is Bursting With Life which is half written, and The Cloud Catcher which I have just begun. Very often, especially towards the end of drafting a novel, an idea for a new story arises spontaneously and clamours to be told.… Read more
While it is true that frustrating your characters moves the narrative forward and holds the reader’s attention, does that have to entail going to extremes? In the struggle to gain and retain an audience, an increasing number of authors are tempted by the extreme.… Read more
“…you can’t sit around and wait for someone to discover you…” Olafur Arnalds, composer.
As an independent novelist, one of the major dilemmas – rather like the young Arnalds seeking to get his compositions played having not followed the traditional channels for a would-be composer – was that her novels only made sense if they were (widely) read.… Read more
In the quest for a better understanding of one’s voice as a writer, Neil Gaiman suggests writing in the style of someone else. So I did. I found the exercise challenging and would willingly have skipped it.… Read more
Shhhhh! Writing. New book. Follow-up to Stories People Tell. Annie promoting local voices. Seventy-five chapters so far. Eighty thousand words. Coming soon.
Writing local voices. Sneek peek!
A feral chant greeted Annie as she threaded between the barriers separating the platform from the concourse.… Read more
Of course, I couldn’t resist. I began a sequel to Stories People Tell. It starts in Waterloo Station, in the press of commuters under this clock where an unpleasant surprise is awaiting Annie and her girlfriend Kevin.
Not all innocent causes are as well-intentioned as they might wish to appear.… Read more
The writing of a novel brings together a wealth of experience and know-how combined with an ability to surrender to a story and let it lead you.
I am very much an advocate of following the story when writing, rather than precluding its course by drawing up an outline before beginning.… Read more
In response to the claims of a man on Twitter, a number of women insist male authors can’t create authentic female characters. But is their generalisation right?