Posts in The writing process

Interview with a writer (and his cat): James Higgerson

Check out this short interview I recorded the other day with James Higgerson, Manchester-based author of The Almost Lizard. In the interview, James tells us how he wrote the novel, what he wanted to communicate, and what most surprised him about getting published. He also gives us a sneak preview of his next novel, Kid Gloves, inspired by Britain’s tabloid-fuelled obsession… Read More

The ten rules of writing fiction

There’s an old Guardian article I’ve used a few times when giving talks on the craft of writing. It was called The Ten Rules of Writing Fiction. The Guardian asked a whole load of famous novelists for their advice, and then printed each novelist’s top ten rules. When I first read it, it made a lot of sense. But then… Read More

A bit of nonsense

I was struggling with my writing this morning, and somehow ended up procrastinating by changing all of the words in the first paragraph of my novel A Virtual Love to the first option that came up on Word’s thesaurus function. This was the result: The timepiece marked noisily cutting-edge the still obverse area. We observed on him, consequently that we… Read More

Catching up

It was good being away from the internet for a while. Not only did I enjoy the extra time exploring Crete and spending time with Genie, but I also had some pleasant surprises when I got back. Instead of watching obsessively for things to happen, I stepped back as things I’d put in motion before I left England continued by… Read More

Some interviews

I’ve been interviewed on a few book blogs lately, talking about my new novel A Virtual Love, and also my writing in general. If you’re interested, here are the links: Manchester book blogger The Workshy Fop asked me about the political dimensions of the book, and about my views on blogging and internet culture Ghanaian-born, South African-based book blogger Geosi did… Read More

Ian McEwan’s early writing influences

Ian McEwan was interviewed in his university magazine this month, talking about his early influences and how he became a writer. Since it’s an interesting story, and some of you may possibly not have seen the latest copy of Falmer: The University of Sussex Magazine, I thought I’d summarise it here. Failure and disappointment The most interesting part, to me,… Read More

Beauty? No, thanks

As a side note to my post last week on the cafes I have killed, I wanted to add one more thing about writing locations. It struck me that in a country with so much beauty, I  have latched onto the ugliest locations in which to do my writing. It seems that beauty doesn’t really work for me, at least… Read More

The cafe killer

I have a confession to make. I’m a natural born killer. Don’t worry – I don’t kill people, or even butterflies. I kill cafes. All I have to do is pick a place to do my writing, go there fairly regularly, and it’ll be closed before the year is out. I’ve even killed a café in Barbados, and I’ve only been… Read More

The importance of staring out of the window

What does a writing day consist of? The image that comes to mind is of someone pounding away on a typewriter with a fixed, manic expression, surrounded by a mess of coffee and cigarettes and balled up sheets of paper. The reality, in my experience, is somewhat different. First, here’s what Martin Amis had to say about it in a recent… Read More