The often overlooked humourist. One of my favourite eras is the late Victorian/early Edwardian times. Just beginning to lose the tightly controlled Victorian veneer of stuffiness it still had a charm and a formality but was much more relaxed. I love the fashions and if I could afford to dress the way the men did … Continue reading Three Men And A Whole Lot More
The gentle stories. Ever since the rise of McDonalds and their kin the word fast has become synonymous with lesser quality. I don’t always agree, and even when the “fast version” isn’t the luxury type there is still a place for it. A few years ago a winner of the Eurovision Song Contest got criticised … Continue reading Slow Reads
A short play. I know, writing about Lockdown is a bit passé so my defence of the following is, I wrote this short play in late 2017; therefore I’m just showing off my weird skills of premonition. It depicted the way I saw society was going long before viruses sped up the process. People living … Continue reading Free PDF of Breaking The First Wall
The fear of spoiling. On my last post I spoke about how I prefer to know as little as possible about a book before I read it. This goes for most other things as well, TV programmes, plays and films for example. Whilst most people don’t want spoilers I’m probably at the far end of … Continue reading Giving Away Too Much
Don’t tell me anything. Ironically there may be some spoilers in the following blog. Earlier this year I finally got round to reading Curtain by Agatha Christie. In general I love Christie’s books and with so many of them it took me a while to get round to Curtain. However there is something different about … Continue reading Avoiding Spoilers
Some interesting reads. For a country that is said to be closed off from the rest of the world there is an awful lot of books and documentaries about North Korea. I guess the fact that as soon as you are told something is a secret we can’t help but want to know. I’ve read … Continue reading North Korea In Books
Just trying to be helpful. Simply because I love writing, or should that be, because I mainly exist in a world of my own imagination’s making, I occasionally look up the Opportunities page of the BBC Writer’s Room website. Sometimes there is a call for short plays from various theatre groups. Generally these have to … Continue reading Scene From My Mind – Free This Weekend 2/3 May
Books everyone seemed to be reading at the time. There always seem to be books about that everyone is reading at that moment. You used to see them held firmly open on buses and trains, I have a habit that if I’m sitting by someone who is reading something that I’ve not heard of but … Continue reading Modern Literary Zeitgeists
Because animals cheer is up. Just a glance at Twitter and Facebook shows that a lot of people like animals. Videos, pictures, gifs about cats, dogs, goats and anything else prove that featuring fauna is always going to be popular. As we are all inside at the moment and as it’s spring, the time of … Continue reading All Creatures In Print
Something to do as we have more time. Growing up there were always two books joked about when anyone wanted to hyperbolise a long text; War And Peace and Crime And Punishment. I always liked the symmetry of the fact that for two books to have the same reputation they always had the same concepts … Continue reading Very Long Reads – Part Two: The Obvious Russian Ones
Something to do as we have more time. If you ask Google how long the average novel is, you get so many different lengths and ideas you could make a book out of them. There does seem to be agreement that generally they are somewhere between 80,000-100,000 words. How that transfers to page count is … Continue reading Very Long Reads – Part One: Victor Hugo
The reasons for setting a novel in the city. As I state elsewhere I’m not Irish. However I have lived for many of my important years in Dublin. To me it’s the default city. I’ve lived in other places but the experiences I have had in the Irish capital are really what made me me. … Continue reading Why Dublin?
It’s not just for kids. Generally I’m not a great fan of watching the film/ TV series of a book I’ve read. I don’t like how they miss things out or change parts. I don’t like being told that a character looks nothing like I had them in my head. This hasn’t always been the … Continue reading Children’s Literature
In full on The Writers Club I love listening to Natalie Haynes Stands Up for the Classics on BBC Radio 4. In the episode on Euripides she retells the play Medea and is amazing. Inspired by how miserable it is I decided to see if I could have a go at a short play based … Continue reading The Tragedy Of Queen Alexia… Available To Read
It’s a universe in itself. Each book is a world, thought out and destined by the writer. The author has full control over the lives and the events of the character’s lives. Therefore a bookshelf is many universes sitting side by side. In some we recognise something close to our actual reality; a true story … Continue reading A Whole New Logic
Confusing cultures. One of the things I love about going on holiday is it gives me so much time away from normal life and I have so many more opportunities to read. Especially true is this if I’m flying. I have the bus to the airport, the long wait in departures (the OCD in me … Continue reading The Travel/ Reading Dilemma
My reads, not the books that came out this year… This is the second part of my look back at some of the books I’ve read this year, including the end of the world as we know it and turn of last century Kenya. Again I’m trying not to give too much of the actual … Continue reading 2019 In Reading Part Two
My reads, not the books that came out this year… At the end of the year I tend to look back on the books I’ve read during that time and feel a nice sense of accomplishment. This year I’ve got through some ones that had been sitting in my reading pile for years – I … Continue reading 2019 In Reading Part One
Thank you for this award. This week the laureates of the Nobel Prize For Literature 2018 and 2019 both received their awards. I’m not going to get into the controversy over one of them, instead I’m wondering how many writers have fantasied about winning it for themselves. The Nobel Prize in Literature has been awarded … Continue reading And The Winner Is…
Now my life is full of books. It’s a little bit late, sorry. I’ve had loads of stuff in my personal life to deal with (having Meniere’s is no fun). But I wanted to draw people’s attention to Terrance Dicks. Very sadly he passed away in August. He was one of the big influences that … Continue reading Thank You Terrance Dicks
What do the stars actually mean? These days we are asked to rate pretty much everything. From our transactions online and holiday accommodation to books we’ve read and music we listen to. The question is what purpose does this achieve? The answer, to influence others to also buy or not. I’m writing this now as … Continue reading Is Rating A Novel A Good Idea?
Whole New Worlds From The Memoirs Of History One of the wonders of reading is being taken in to a different world. I love history so love a book that can show me the past in a way I can feel what it must have been like to live there. How much better if the … Continue reading Seeing The Past Through The Eyes Of Those Who Lived It
If You Like Agatha Christie… There is no way I could or would compare myself to the brilliant Agatha Christie; but I can be inspired by her. I’ve read many of her novels and been to see The Mousetrap. I know who did it… but I shan’t tell. If you’ve not seen it, go and … Continue reading Seven For A Secret… Available To Read
Can I Really Call Myself A “Writer”? – Do I Qualify? I love writing, I always have and over most of the years I’ve traipsed this planet I have written a lot of stuff. The problem is it sits on old laptops or has been lost along the way. I’ve written books, half of books … Continue reading I Am A Writer!… But in the real world…
Whilst I set this up there may be some random things appearing! Sorry for that. Oh that’s a picture I took from the top of Xunantunich (Sho-nan-toe-nitch) – a Maya temple in Belize – it’s there because I wanted a picture of something and this is the first blog and no one is reading it.
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