Blog
Before gender confusion became really confusing, there was Boy2Girl

This is the happy day when a new UK edition of my book Boy2Girl is published by Andersen Press. It is probably the story that gave me most fun when I was writing it. It was written at a time of change in my life, 15 years ago. I was living in a small caravan […]

Blog
Enter Pervy John – songs From the van #3

I wrote ‘My Village’ one autumn a few years back. It was, I think, provoked by the idea that the great city-dwelling majority of the population were given a distorted view of life in the country  – one that was half Midsomer Murders  and half Springwatch. I wanted to tell the truth. Of course, I did nothing […]

Blog
Meeting the squire of Levington Park, JP Donleavy

The news that JP Donleavy  – author, playwright, litigant and squire  – died earlier this week has reminded me of one of the more peculiar meetings I had while researching a biography of our mutual friend Willie Donaldson in 2006. Donleavy’s early novels, The Ginger Man, The Beastly Beatitudes of Balthazar B and The Onion […]

Blog
We’re with stupid – the seductive lure of idiocy on the left and the right

Soon after the death of Fidel Castro, I pointed out somewhere online that, for all its brave resistance to the crude might of the United States, the Cuban regime did have the unpleasant habit of locking up those who disagreed with it.  Kangaroo courts had sentenced writers, academics, teachers and librarians for up to 28 […]

Print
Exit, Royal Joker

It was, even by the standards of the British royal family, an extraordinary revelation. The Duke of Edinburgh, according to a report by the veteran court correspondent Talbot Church, had been causing more concern than usual in royal circles with his unscripted, off-the-cuff comments. Shortly before Prince William married Kate Middleton in 2011, he had […]

Blog
The art of not writing – some practical guidance

  I recently came across a literary quotation by Hugh Grant. Asked by an interviewer about whether he wanted to write, he came up with an impressively honest answer. ‘It’s actually more comfortable to think I could write a novel than to discover that you can’t,’ he said. That spoke to me, as I go […]

Blog
Crossing the line: when local politicians go bonkers

First, an apology. This is a small story. It is about a village, its school, some houses and a white line. It would not be out of place in one of the quieter episodes of The Archers. To some, the fact that I want to write about it may seem like the final, irrefutable evidence […]

Blog
The wind whistling past your ears: dealing with the post-novel blues

It has gone. The piece of work which has occupied over the past couple of years, a novel, has left my desk to make its way in the blustery, chilly outside world. Almost certainly it will be back, nagging for attention of some kind, but right now I’m in that odd, conflicted state of mind […]

Blog

Recent posts from Blog

Print

Recent posts from Print

Writer's Shed

On...