7th January 2014

This week’s post is a tad later in the day than planned, as I’m back at the day-job this week and – more crucially – forgot to put “Write next GTD blog post” in Things (the ToDo app I use on my phone and various Macs). A good example of why you should write things…

31st December 2013

One of the things you get asked a lot, as a writer (after “Where do you get your ideas from?”) is “How do you find time to write?”. The simplest answer is that you have to give up other time-consuming activities: watching TV, playing video games, even—to some extent—reading. But even that will only get…

22nd October 2013

When I was writing The Merchant of Dreams I bought two Playmobil pirate ships and a bunch of figures to help me plan a small sea battle and the climactic land battle. It was so helpful that I did the same for The Prince of Lies, winning a vintage castle and a bunch more figures on…

6th August 2013

I know a bunch of my writing friends share my passion for lovely pens and notebooks, so I thought I’d share one of my collections with you… When I was 11 I was admitted to the local girls’ grammar school, a somewhat old-fashioned establishment with pretensions of grandeur. It was the first school I’d been…

27th March 2012

It’s not often you achieve a lifetime goal – I think the last time I could say that, hand on heart, was when I graduated – but today is one of those days. The novel that I laboured over for more than four years has finally gone out into the world, or at least those…

20th March 2012

One of the issues that keeps coming up in reviews of The Alchemist of Souls is my portrayal of the non-straight characters. Readers who know the period praise the authenticity, whilst those who know little about Elizabethan culture seem surprised by it. Rather than comment directly on individual reviews (which seldom reflects well on the writer),…

31st January 2012

Sound the trumpets! Throw the confetti! I have hit my deadline! Yes, after months of meandering through rewrites and then a gruelling eight weeks of further editing, I finished this initial draft of The Merchant of Dreams and sent it to my editor – one whole day ahead of schedule! I’m slightly worried I may have set…

29th November 2011

One of my favourite bits of writing fantasy is the action scenes. I rarely bother to plan them in advance – one sword-fighting scene in The Alchemist of Souls was described as “Big fight!” in my outline – as I find they’re more fun, and more fluid, if I just make things up as I…