Drinking water

Why is it always alcohol?  Not only alcohol in small quantities but constant replenishments mixing wine, whisky and gin.  I am referring to the fiction I’ve recently read.  All fabulous books; ‘The Green Road’ / Anne Enright, ‘Sweet Caress’ / William Boyd, ‘High Rise’ / J G Ballard and ‘Where my heart used to beat’ / […]

Starting again

‘Incident on the Line’ is finished, the script about to be prepared and sent for publication.  The blurb, the dedication are ready too; there is a photo idea for the cover merely waiting for the lettering.  So what do I do now? I’ve been writing a few short stories over the summer, recently completed one […]

The fiction of war

Can fiction portray fact without sounding as if the research undertaken is being shoehorned in, and is, therefore, a distraction from the storyline? I’ve never wished to read factual books about war; strategies, weaponry,  battles, how they were won or lost.  Partly I fear the danger of glorifying war even though I know that those who […]

Why blog?

When it was first suggested that I might want to create a website, I couldn’t think what for. Advertise my books?  But then how would anyone know that I had a website, or be interested. The constant nag, very often into a woman’s mind, which says; ‘isn’t this a bit above your station’? An exaggeration […]

Serendipity

Serendipity is one of my favourite words, the sound as well as the meaning; ‘occurence of events by chance in a beneficial way’.  The element of surprise is wholly satisfactory.  Fate, fortune and happenstance take us into the realm of risk; the chance might be good or bad.  As planning and plotting in real life never […]

Light, we need light

Winter dark, a new year, and avidly I watch the times of the rising and setting sun as if unsure that it will happen again, that the year will turn. The only solace the sight of the first aconites and snowdrops which are greeted with such excitement, as if I’d never seen them before. The […]

Keeping the old and bringing in the new

Christmas tugs at all the memories of the past, those rituals and traditions we set up as a family that we separately and together remember, what was special and what we must carry on into the future. Our family were more separated than usual this year, so it seemed particularly important that at the same time […]

What would we do about paper?

Shopping lists, the medium for watercolour painting, books, toilet paper, wrapping paper, shopping bags, tickets for theatre in all its variety, train tickets, bus tickets, hard copies, wills, envelopes, newspapers, magazines; the uses are endless. Uses that are impossible to translate into other forms, or if they are, less comfortable or comforting. This is a […]

Is this a gardening blog?

There are toadstools popping up everywhere, spiders assuming ownership of every part of the garden, webs binding innocent passersby; and it’s the time for pruning, lifting and splitting, a month of putting it all to rest. And I have a short story which is spinning in my head, needing to be trapped, pruned, lifted and […]

Grim and harrowing choices

I read and hear on the news that the Booker shortlist announced today is ‘grimmer’ with choices which explore or relate ‘harrowing passages’, ‘a tremendous amount of violence’ with themes of abuse, brutality and the futility of life. As someone who might well be put off reading this ‘extraordinary range of approaches to fiction’, I […]