The Dangers of Over-Plotting

The results are in. After months of worrying over the impact the new English GCSE would have on our students, we’ve found that, thankfully, they’ve done about as well as we expected. Look a little closer, and you could see the particular issues this new system has thrown up. Unsurprisingly, in English Language, the question […]

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Give Yourself Credit

I’ll be honest, it hasn’t been a great summer for the word count. Finding myself at the end of a mammoth edit for one novel and fiddling around with ideas for a new one has not exactly led to an outpouring of sentences. Always a bit of a ‘should-er,’ I find myself getting a little […]

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When Writing Seems Impossible

One of my favourite reactions to the question ‘why do you write’ came from Lisa McInerney when I saw her at the Emerald Street Literary Festival last year. She’d just won the Bailey’s Prize for fiction (you can see my thoughts on the book here), so she had reasons to be cheerful. Her answer was […]

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Is Borrowing from Mythology Cheating?

When I was a student at University, I took a composition course. Bashing away at the keys of a piano in a quiet practice room (it was 11pm, I had homework due the following day), the impossibility of creating anything genuinely ‘new’ suddenly struck me. There they were, 8 little keys, with black ones in […]

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Holiday Writing (does it work?)

I​`​m currently in an apartment on Miljet, a beautiful little island just off the coast of Croatia. This is the second week of a fantastic holiday that`s taken me from Sarajevo, through Mostar, down to Dubrovnik and finally here. So the question is — what effect does all that relaxation and enjoyment have on your […]

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How Memory Can Help Your Writing

I distinctly remember, around the age of twenty, vowing that I wouldn’t be one of those people who stopped going clubbing. All of this nonsense about it being too loud, or too late, or too expensive, was something you would never hear from my mouth. I loved going out and drinking and dancing every week. […]

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Women Are Not A Minority

It’s a pretty important week for females and fantasy. The BBC have announced that the next Dr. Who is going to be a woman. For many, this is a very welcome change. For far too long, this genre has been almost completely dominated by white men. From Superman to Wolverine, Dr Who to Thor, the […]

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