Category Writing

Writing a novel: taking myself away for a week

A recent article in The Guardian caused some controversy by suggesting that writing is an elite activity because it requires two things: time and space. Of course, both those things will often require money, meaning that as Lynn Steger Strong suggests, you can only be a writer if you can afford it. I’m not saying […]

My tips for entering short story competitions

Look, I’m going to be honest here: I’m no short story competition expert. Of the 20+ competitions I have entered in the past year and a half, I’ve had exactly 0 successes – longlist, shortlist, somewhere-in-between-list. No luck. But I haven’t given up, and I continue to methodically and strategically apply to short story competitions, […]

Writing a novel: the beginning

In the interest of being honest and open, and sharing my entire writing journey here on my blog, I suppose I should say that I have started working (mainly thinking) on a new novel! It’s really exciting, but something in me hesitates to talk openly about it, simply because it is still all so new […]

How to stay motivated as a writer

Writing really is a strange and lonely occupation and, like many writers, my motivation ebbs and flows depending on how busy I am, what I’m writing, and my general mood. However, there are things I know that work to keep me organised and to keep me going. Here are my tips on how to stay […]

An ode to the first draft

Ok, I finished a rough first draft of a short story about ten minutes ago, and nothing felt more apt than writing a speedy blog post about just how much I love this feeling (and just how much I dread the next stage of the process). As most people know, the first draft of anything […]

Why I’m writing (and reading) short stories

When I’m asked what I’m writing on my Creative Writing MA, a lot of people seem surprised to hear that my answer is short stories. As many of you might know, I have written one (and a half) novels, and until I started on my Creative Writing course, I had never even considered the idea […]

Three things I’ve learnt from my Creative Writing MA

I’ve nearly completed the first year of my Creative Writing MA at Royal Holloway, University of London and although I still have a year left to work on my dissertation and big creative writing project, my taught classes are already over. I think one day I’ll find the words to write more about this whole […]