White Lies and Black Sheep

You can find this book on Amazon as an eBook or paperback. Not my first novel, but the first one I’m admitting to. Previous attempts are not tucked away in a drawer, they were ceremoniously burnt on the fire (nowadays of course I would recycle them). I understood that first novels are often a thinly veiledContinue reading “White Lies and Black Sheep”

Timing is everything

I spent seven months writing a book about the world 100 years after it has recovered from a pandemic virus, rising sea levels and massive solar storms and what happens? The same month I started sending my manuscript out to agents, we get a pandemic corona virus and a threat that the western Antarctic iceContinue reading “Timing is everything”

Do you write within a genre?

I didn’t set out to write in a particular genre. In fact I’m not sure where the plot for my first novel came from, but I am fascinated by the way most of us make decisions in our teens that inform and influence the rest of our life. I have heard, on more than oneContinue reading “Do you write within a genre?”

Choosing character’s names

My character’s names often change as a novel develops. Sometimes the original name just doesn’t seem to suit the way the character or their backstory develops. There’s a theory called nominative determinism which speculates that your given name might define what you do in life. I don’t subscribe to that theory, but names do needContinue reading “Choosing character’s names”

How do you start a novel?

I had heard from many different sources that there is a tendency to put a version of yourself front and centre of your first novel. I wanted to avoid this trap so decided to write from the perspective of a young woman. Writing is a form of escapism and jumping both gender and age wasContinue reading “How do you start a novel?”

Plots and storyboards

My first novel was planned meticulouslyI had no idea how ‘real’ authors developed their plots. Previously I had tried to write a novel with very little planning and my plot got confused – even the characters in my novel got confused. So I set about working out everything beforehand. Here is my nerdy, old-fashioned, personalisedContinue reading “Plots and storyboards”

How not to get a Literary Agent

PreperationBefore submitting any material I read through the profiles of some 150 agents. But I didn’t only read their profiles, I read their twitter feeds, watched their video posts, read about their likes and dislikes and checked the authors they represent. I’ve failed so far, but what have I learned?I submitted the first three chaptersContinue reading “How not to get a Literary Agent”

A character spider

Spoiler alertThis character spider contains facts about characters in my second novel The Act of Falling that don’t appear in the text. If you know anything about personality disorders you would probably work them out anyway, but just thought I’d mention that. The size of the circleMy focus is on Emily Hamton, therefore she takesContinue reading “A character spider”

Does the world need another novel?

Probably not, and yet I’m writing my fourth novel. So why? I still don’t have a simple, single sentence answer to that question of why I do it – but here are some of the excuses I’ve used when I don’t feel people want the full answer. I wanted to see if I could writeContinue reading “Does the world need another novel?”