Yesterday I worked my last full-time day as a teacher. From September, I'll be part-time. I love teaching. There's so much I love about it: sharing my love of reading and writing; working with amazing colleagues and often even more amazing students; planning schemes of work designed to educate and illuminate and entertain; and building … Continue reading One step in the future
The Schrödinger’s Cat of Being a Writer
First off, I admit that this analogy probably applies to anything that you've ever had to wait for, but as I'm currently waiting to hear back from a couple of agents, it's an analogy that is sitting strong with me right now. As you all know, the idea of Schrödinger's Cat is that there is a … Continue reading The Schrödinger’s Cat of Being a Writer
So long, farewell… for now
Yesterday was our last residential day on the MA. Just over two years ago, I'd just heard that I'd been offered a place and I thought that all my dreams had come true - two years later and dreams I'd never even really contemplated have come true. It's been an amazing time that has just … Continue reading So long, farewell… for now
What a difference some external validation makes!
I've written before about the struggle between confidence and wanting to burn what I've done and run screaming through the streets - it's odd that a career choice that is actually quite insular is driven so much by external validation. As a writer just starting out, it can be really hard to find the kind … Continue reading What a difference some external validation makes!
The trials and tribulations of writing confidence
Happy New Year – Let’s make 2018 the Year of the Writer
Welcome to 2018 everyone. How exciting! A new year! I always love New Year for the possibilities that it brings. Is there any other time of year that holds so much possibility and hope for the future? Last year was pretty good for me in terms of my writing. Sometimes when you're in the middle … Continue reading Happy New Year – Let’s make 2018 the Year of the Writer
My writing bucketlist… or how will I know if I’ve made it?
I've been giving some thought recently to the crippling self-doubt that seems to afflict many writers (and although I'm still in the almost- camp, I can definitely relate to that almost paralysing fear that what you've written is maybe, possibly, almost certainly utter rubbish) and wondering how I can benchmark my career as a writer. … Continue reading My writing bucketlist… or how will I know if I’ve made it?
Making more of your setting
I've just read the excellent Deadfall, by Linda Fairstein (one of my regular favourites) and it struck me that there are some books that go beyond merely setting a story in a specific place; the very tentacles of the story worm their way through the whole location. There's some extra special about that kind of … Continue reading Making more of your setting
A year in the life of a Crime Writing MA
I've been really quiet lately - a combination of ill health and the fact I suddenly had 20,000 words of various essays to be completed and handed in for the MA - but I'm back to wellness now and have met all my deadlines so yay me! When I first got accepted to the MA … Continue reading A year in the life of a Crime Writing MA
Making my fictional home in Sheffield
It's hard working out where to set a novel. Especially if you're hoping to have more than just one, it needs to be sustainable. I explained last time about how I'd been originally planning somewhere entirely fictional but was persuaded to choose a real location. I chose Sheffield because... It's Northern I felt very strongly … Continue reading Making my fictional home in Sheffield
A Sense of Place
When I started writing my novel, I was virtually certain that it was going to be set in a non-specific location (i.e. a fictional city) - after all, Susan Hill does it in the Simon Serailler novels and it works well - she creates a sense of realism in her place. My tutor however was … Continue reading A Sense of Place
Finding the time and the mental space
I was listening to a podcast from The Bestseller Experiment in which Sarah Pinborough (currently topping charts and twitter channels with her novel Behind Her Eyes) was talking about how she writes. She said that as long as she was thinking about her writing every day, then it didn't matter that she wasn't physically writing every … Continue reading Finding the time and the mental space