Cheddar library and meeting Maria McCann

Our local library at Cheddar in Somerset, largely run by volunteers due to funding cuts, whistled up a wonderful surprise last week when the highly-regarded historical novelist Maria McCann came to talk to library-goers and fans. Maria’s novels have been picked by Richard and Judy, and short-listed for the Orange Prize.

Not only is Maria charming and candidly entertaining, she writes excellent polished and very well-researched novels. Continue reading “Cheddar library and meeting Maria McCann”

Roman Britain wasn’t built in a day…

imageI think you could say it’s all gone a bit pear-shaped over the past two weeks. Not wanting to make excuses, but … since my last blog I have written a miserly thousand or so words for my NaNoWriMo draft novel.

Now this is not entirely my fault. In fact, I’ve got a pretty cast-iron excuse. That rumble with my orthopaedic surgeon in late October?   Continue reading “Roman Britain wasn’t built in a day…”

NaNoWriMo Inspiration

As I slog through November I’m finding that one of the joys of the NaNoWriMo website are the pep talks by established authors.

Here’s one I just have to share, by successful romance novelist Stephanie Walker. She gets right to the heart of what NaNoWriMo is all about: getting that first draft of a novel – no matter how rough round the edges – down on paper within 30 days.

Stephanie writes beautifully, with clarity and feeling. She’s just inspirational!

Click for Stephanie Walker’s pep talk.

To follow my blog posts, click on the little pop-up tab below in the bottom right corner.

Get your Christmas shopping here!

Yep, the wait is over. SF/fantasy anthology On Another Plane, featuring the heart-stopping and heart-warming tribulations of astronaut Emily Harris in my story ‘Calypso Solo’, is now available from Amazon in paperback and ebook; also available for Nook and Kobo, as well as in print from Lulu.

Published by AudioArcadia October 2015
Published by AudioArcadia October 2015

Happy reading, and if you do buy your own copy before sending others to your loved ones for Christmas, please consider writing an Amazon review. The best reviews might just get the writer featured in a future story!

To follow my blog posts, click on the little pop-up tab below in the bottom right corner.

NaNoWriMo and my part in its downfall

Today is Monday November 9, which means I have for the past week been one of the half-million writers who have signed up to write a 50,000 word novel this November. For those not in the know (lucky you!), the lunatic endeavour of National Novel Writing MonthPrint takes place every November, encouraging all of us with a novel inside us to just get it all out in a whoosh of a first draft. A fab website with lots of inspiration, webinars and resources for NaNoers supports the scribbling. Even better, famous writers such as the wonderful Diana Gabaldon provide free mentoring tips. Continue reading “NaNoWriMo and my part in its downfall”

“On Another Plane” – SF story published!

Published by AudioArcadia October 2015
Published by AudioArcadia October 2015

I’m excited. Very excited. Superlatively excited. Not that you would notice. What immensely significant event has occurred, you ask?

Only that my SF short story “Calypso Solo” has just been published by AudioArcadia in their anthology On Another Plane, edited by the wonderful Lindsay Fairgrieve.

(Small yay with exclamation mark allowable?) Continue reading ““On Another Plane” – SF story published!”

Surviving BristolCon

BristolCon, the annual SF and fantasy convention for the south-west, has warped through and swept me up in its wake. Off I tottered last Saturday (just on a single crutch, getting bolder now) to the Bristol Doubletree Hotel, transformed for the day into a galaxy far, far away. Rubbing shoulders with witches and fairies (sadly no Klingons and not a single Darth Vader anywhere), Continue reading “Surviving BristolCon”

SF Success!

It’s taken a while, but I’m very happy that I’m about to be published in the UK – in a book! – for the first time in the science-fiction genre.

My short SF story “Two’s Company”, retitled as “Calypso Solo”, has recently won a competition run by publishers Arcadia. Alongside other winning SF and fantasy stories, my story will be published in an anthology, simultaneously in paperback and as an ebook. Hopefully in time for lots of sales in the Christmas run-up!

Here’s a snippet from the beginning to whet your appetite… Continue reading “SF Success!”

My news spring 2015

It’s been a busy couple of months. Last week I sent off the final assignment of my Open University A215 creative writing course, ‘The Bath Curse’ a Romano-British historical fiction story which I hope will get me a good pass. The week before I was kept inspired and frantically writing at an Arvon Foundation short story course at beautiful Totleigh Barton in North Devon. We were very privileged to have as tutors the award-winning short story writer James Lasdun, all the way from NYC, and the exotic and multi-talented Chines writer and filmmaker Xaiolu Guo. Guest speaker was Zoe Lambert. A wonderful five days, and I was immensely encouraged to get very positive feedback from both tutors. Continue reading “My news spring 2015”