Category Archives: Publishing

Paris Mon Amour — A Review

Rarely can a novel have been so appropriately titled as Isabel Costello’s Paris Mon Amour. The city is so evocatively described it becomes one of the characters (Paris: Mon Amour, perhaps?). Also, the novel explores the contrasting romantic mores of … Continue reading

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Paris Mon Amour — Très Bonnes Nouvelles pour Mon Amie

I hope I’ve not embarrassed myself with my dodgy French title but who cares when there’s some good news to celebrate. This week I learned of another book deal for one of my writing friends — this time Isabel Costello of The … Continue reading

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From the Workshop to the Bookshelves

As this post was written on Hallowe’en, it ‘s very appropriate that it’s about a rather flesh-creeping novel. I’ve previously posted about my fellow MMU MA graduate, Kerry Hadley-Pryce’s, debut novel, The Black Country, when its publication was a few weeks away. Then I wrote about … Continue reading

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The Black Country

The Manchester Metropolitan University MA is apparently ‘the most successful writing programme available in the UK today in terms of students and graduates achieving publication’ (according to the Manchester Writing School website). And who am I to disagree? Not only am … Continue reading

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My Guest Post on the Romantic Novelists’ Association Blog!

My last blog post, about my happy experiences with the Romantic Novelists’ Association (RNA) New Writers’ Scheme (NWS), was read by several of the committee of the RNA itself and they were so interested in the post and my thoughts … Continue reading

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Liars’ League London — Come and Hear My Story Performed

I’m thrilled and very excited that a short story of mine (called Do You Dare Me To Cross The Line) has been selected as one of the Liars’ League’s winning entries for their March reading event. It takes place on Tuesday this week (11th … Continue reading

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Into the Woods with Robert Galbraith

Ironically, the big literary story of July, and probably of 2013, has been the real-life whodunit over the authorship of a novel about a private detective. Even those who don’t follow book news with my keen interest will know the … Continue reading

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Agent Hunter

Sounds like some kind of Skyfall clone doesn’t it, but Agent Hunter is a new source of information that might be almost as valuable to aspiring authors as state secrets to 007. It’s a new website that has collated a huge … Continue reading

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The Night Rainbow

Last night I went to my first book launch — Claire King, author of The Night Rainbow (published today by Bloomsbury) was kind enough to invite me to Daunt Books on Marylebone High Street for the event. Unlike many of the people … Continue reading

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Beaten To It?

…but hopefully not with a paddle. I spotted this in W.H.Smith at Northampton services on the M1 last weekend. I’d realised my novel’s title is a bit of a hostage to fortune. I like it because it works in conjunction … Continue reading

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York Festival Of Writing

Apologies for the absence of recent updates: writing time has recently become increasingly hard to come by, although mostly in a good way, via holidays and other enjoyable events that I have hopes of getting around to writing blog posts … Continue reading

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Agents and the Changing World of Publishing — An MA Perspective

In the MMU Creative Writing MA we don’t just work on our novels-in-progress. That’s the main body of work but we need to take a broader perspective so we understand the context of  modern literature and the publishing world. One … Continue reading

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Voice

There’s a lot of discussion in creative writing courses about how authors can find their voice. It’s quite a difficult concept to articulate — most simplistically it’s what defines the distinctiveness of an author’s style. This may, depending on the … Continue reading

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The Cake

Following various tweets and retweets I came across a great blog posting from the US by writer J.M. Tohline about approaching agents via query letters and submitting manuscripts. There was a response from an agent called Amy Boggs that not … Continue reading

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One Day

‘One Day’ by David Nicholls won the Sainsbury’s Popular Fiction prize at the Galaxy National Book Awards last week. I’ve mentioned this book in passing a couple of times on this blog since I read it in the summer. I’ve … Continue reading

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Mo Yan

No, it’s not a piece of George Dubya Bush street-slang (as in ‘Yo Blair’) but the pen name of one of the leading Chinese authors whose novel, ‘Life and Death Are Wearing Me Out’ is one of the books we’re … Continue reading

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‘A Beginning, A Muddle and An End’?

Interesting blog on the Guardian Books website today by Robert McCrum. He talks about Ford Madox Ford’s advice that the literary quality or narrative power of a novel should never be judged by the opening alone but by reading a … Continue reading

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Good Morning

The Richard and Judy book club is back — albeit in an online manifestation (in conjunction with W.H.Smith) rather than via broadcasting. Seeing as their old ‘This Morning’ book club seemed to have transformed into generic ‘TV Book Club’, which … Continue reading

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Time on Franzen

Jonathan Franzen’s new novel ‘Freedom’ has been causing a stir among reviewers — one Guardian Books blogger is already calling it the novel of the century. Time magazine a couple of weeks ago gave Franzen the honour of being on … Continue reading

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First Dale Winton, Now Amazon Remind Me of An Enormous Boob

I’ve just had an e-mail from Amazon asking me if I’d be interested in a certain selection of titles by one of their best-selling authors. The titles include: ‘Crystal’, ‘Sapphire’, ‘Paradise’ and, oh this is a bit worrying, ‘Angel’ and, … Continue reading

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