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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Fragment #6 Displaced

A slump of a man is in the waiting area. Hunched over the chrome and black chair, his scuffed trainers rest on the marble. Baggy denim hangs from his knees, eyes darting through the shaggy fall of hair. Jacob stands separate, watching his brother’s discomfort. Sealed in a suit, the polish of his shoes matching […]

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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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Why I’m Only Reading Books by Women

I’m trying to remember the last time I read a book by a man. Or, for that matter, the last time I watched something that didn’t have a female character in a dominant role. It seems that, perhaps unconsciously at first, I’m moving away from things created by men, or at least things that have […]

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Windows – The View from my Writing Desk

Each time I’ve moved in the last five years, my writing desk has always gone next to a window. In four different houses, in four different boroughs of London, I’ve looked out over the street for inspiration, a quiet moment, or sometimes just to be nosey. I did try having it in another room in […]

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Fragment #5 Paralysed in Place

The dregs of night wash down the street. Squares of light indicate those pulled from sleep unnaturally early. Occasional cars rush by, accelerating under the discreet blanket of darkness. The city is rousing itself, spewing out the first of the commuters from their doors, reflections of those who will follow later, out of sync with […]

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Unplug – How to Step Back from the World

On a dog walk with my sister recently, she vented an uncomfortable but pertinent truth. Why is it, she asked me, as we trudged through a bracken-crusted wood, that people throw themselves into work, spending hours and hours doing things that make them stressed and unhappy? More than that, the proceeds of this treadmill of […]

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Uncertain Times – How Can We Embrace Uncertainty?

The only thing that’s sure at the moment in UK politics, despite claims to the contrary, is that it’s an incredibly uncertain time. Managing that feeling, embracing it even, is something you will have to get used to if you want to continue to write. Perhaps, something you’ll need to embrace in many aspects of […]

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Fragment #4 Exploration

Thick green canopy that stretches away, an endless carpet folded over the slump and rise of mountains. Underneath, we trudge through sinewy grasses. They slap and swoosh, fondling our legs and leaving seeds as mementos. Down now, the air earthy, ground beneath sinking under the pressure of our feet. Fingers of sunlight tease their way […]

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