Today I attended a Cheltenham Literature Festival workshop by Jo Herbert, editor of the ‘Writers and Artists Yearbook,’ on ‘How to Get Published.’ Not all the advice was new to me, but it is surprising how often, despite knowing the theory, I don’t keep to it. It really helped to make me think about things […]
Lack of self-belief is a common problem, especially among anyone in the creative arts. Comments like ‘When are you going to get a proper job?’ or ‘Are you still a lady of leisure?’, are probably not intended to be malicious, it is just that people in a regular 9-5 job have a very rigid view […]
I’m not a quitter. Often I don’t quit even when I should. I didn’t lead a privileged life: my family were poor and my education wasn’t brilliant, but one thing I learned was not to give up, so I use my past to shape my future. Today I experienced an example of this. I flicked […]
Writing can be a lonely occupation. It lends itself to introspection which in turn can lead to a kind of self-indulgent pity party.
I used to almost apologise for being a writer. If I was asked what I do, I would say something like, ‘Well I have written some novels and I like to write poetry,’ which didn’t even sound convincing to me. Comments like, ‘Are you still a lady of leisure?‘ didn’t help either, but the biggest […]
Henry Ford once said that ‘Thinking is the hardest work there is, which is probably why so few people engage in it.‘
I’m a sucker for a hero and I have people that I look up to in writing just as in every other sphere of my life. I love the wit of Oscar Wilde; the way that John Grisham builds powerful plots; I’m fascinated by Jodi Picoult’s interesting characterisation and I adore Joanne Harris’ vivid descriptions.
When I used to file my writing in cardboard files, nothing was ever out of place and if I needed to update any work, I threw out the old one.
In writing, getting the work out there inevitably involves facing criticism … but criticism, if it is constructive, improves the writing. I have had my first novel, ‘Chasing the Wind,’ up on the Authonomy website, (a peer reviewed website run by Harper Collins – www.authonomy.com), for quite a while and much of the criticism has […]
Illigitimi non carborundum – don’t let the bastards wear you down. (Although I believe the Latin is a little suspect.)