Category Archives: On Writing

On Failure

The other day, a pretty miserable day in general as it happens, I discovered my novel hadn’t made it from the longlist to the shortlist of a well known competition. All in all, it was a ‘I’m this close to … Continue reading

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Does it Matter if Novels Aren’t Plausible?

Does anyone care about plausibility in novels anymore? Or are readers just so hungry for twist upon twist, they don’t mind how improbable this renders the story line?   Read a book like ‘Gone Girl’ and you could well believe … Continue reading

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Write What You Read

As I start to think about my next novel and what kind of book it might be, I remember the advice meted out by a lecturer on my MA. She recommended trying to write, not the kind of book you … Continue reading

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Pass the Port

To be a writer you’re supposed to write every day. I try to adhere to this, although I don’t crucify myself over it. During the mayhem of Christmas and the New Year, I tend to put aside my ongoing projects … Continue reading

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I have the seed of an idea for my next novel. Don’t tell anyone, Claudia. Keep it a secret. Don’t say what it’s about. Don’t say what kind of novel it is. Don’t say ANYTHING. Tentatively, I’ve begun to write … Continue reading

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Where do you get your inspiration from?

It’s such a common question for writers to ask and be asked. Now that I’m contemplating writing another novel, I’m asking it myself. Many people, when they find out I write, say, ‘Oh, I’ve got so many amazing ideas for … Continue reading

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When Is A Thriller Not A Thriller?

At a writers’ conference recently I availed myself of the opportunity to get some feedback on my novel from a professional, published author.  I had to submit in advance the first five pages, along with a synopsis, and was then … Continue reading

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Do You Have To Be A Selfish Bastard To Be A Writer?

A few years ago I went on a residential writing course. Whilst there, we were visited by a well known and rather brilliant writer, who went on that year to win the Booker Prize. He read to us an extract … Continue reading

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My Top Ten Distractions From Writing

Every writer has them.  Yes, they do. Every writer spends a whole load of time moaning about how there isn’t enough time to write and then, when faced with all the time and opportunity in the world, when all the … Continue reading

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Should You Read And Write?

Recently, when I reached a sticky point in my writing, when I was really struggling, I noticed that I had stopped reading.  Normally I have one reading book on the go and another audiobook which I listen to as I … Continue reading

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