Stuck in the Slough of Despond – Reasons for not writing

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Ten months ago, in my post, ‘Births, quilting and other reasons for not writing,’ I felt optimistic about returning to writing. Five months ago, I was redrafting ‘The Whirlstone,’ writing the story from the viewpoint of three different characters. Since … Continue reading

The Four Fairies of One Tree Hill

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Firstly, I wish you all a Happy New Year. Since my last post, time has done that peculiar thing where it slows down and speeds up at the same time. My mum has been in hospital in South London since … Continue reading

Female Fantasy Fiction Writers

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Writing about Neil Gaiman and Alan Garner in my last post caused me to revisit Anne McCaffrey’s fantasy books. I read most of these in my early twenties, borrowing them from the public library. I would suggest starting with Dragonflight, … Continue reading

The Importance of Reading Fiction as Championed by Neil Gaiman

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I’m going to be quoting today from a lecture given by Neil Gaiman for The Reading Agency delivered on 14th October 2013 at the Barbican in London. If you would like to read the abridged version of this lecture as … Continue reading

Memories, Music and Medieval Medicine

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It’s been a good fortnight for writing and family contacts. Have visited my daughter in Madrid and spent countless hours playing with my new grandaughter. Songs and rhymes that I haven’t thought about for years flew into my consciousness – … Continue reading

The Evermen Saga by James Maxwell

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Gripped and enthralled by the fantasy world of Merralya, at times dreaming about the characters and the settings, I fully understand James Maxwell’s byline, ‘Exploring this world while dreaming of others.’ The first book, ‘Enchantress,’ was self-published, but eighteen months … Continue reading

Births, Quilting and Other Excuses for Not Writing

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This past month I have had lots of time to read, but the writing has disappeared out the window. These are my excuses: Too excited, awaiting for the birth of my first grandchild – and the owners of the Spanish … Continue reading

The Last Watch of the Night

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Excuse this blog if it’s not strictly about writing. I have been in Spain for three weeks awaiting the arrival of my first grandchild. She arrived nine days ago, later than expected. I expect all grannies, nannies, grandmothers, grand-meres and … Continue reading

Not in Front of the Adults

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One of the problems when writing middle grade fiction is getting rid of the parents. This appeared to be easier in the past as children roamed freely in books such as ‘Five Children and It‘ and the ‘Famous Five Series’ … Continue reading

Elephants in South London

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I started at Dog Kennel Hill Primary School in South London in January 1960 when I was four and three quarter years old. The playground was split into two sections, one for the infants and the other for the junior … Continue reading