She Wrote It, But…the Irish Literary Fiction Edition

Note: this is an exercise based on Joanna Russ’s How to Suppress Women’s Writing. I adapted it for my own use. Yesterday, at a time of great mental duress, I took a biro and notebook and started writing; soon I covered two pages. It was a deeply therapeutic exercise. I post the annotated notes fromContinue reading “She Wrote It, But…the Irish Literary Fiction Edition”

Writing Other Cultures When You’re White

I was going to start this off with some mealy-mouthed title about power differentials or marginalised voices or other intersectional stuff or the like, but decided all that was just being evasive. Because what I’m doing is writing a book narrated by a person of colour, and I’m white. There’s been a lot of discussionContinue reading “Writing Other Cultures When You’re White”

Free Short Story: Unfortunate Stars

Unfortunate Stars follows war veteran Friedrich as he reminisces about a battlefield encounter twenty-three years earlier that changed his life. Click on the image to subscribe and get a free copy. I have finally managed to finish up work on a short story that will be available to subscribers to my mailing list. I’ve workedContinue reading “Free Short Story: Unfortunate Stars”

Mailing List, Freebie Story and Other Sundries

Well! It’s been a busy and enjoyable few weeks since Margaret Madden kindly hosted the cover reveal for Lucia’s War, a new story of music, motherhood and racial struggle during WWI. During that time I pretty much parked on Twitter promoting the ARC giveaway, now closed. There is more work to be done before the ARCs willContinue reading “Mailing List, Freebie Story and Other Sundries”

Now You Know: Writing Historical Fiction In a Dangerous Present

Audio of this blog entry available here: Should we or shouldn’t we? That is the question. I’m sure I’m not the only author who questions her moral right to create fiction in a world where facts and events are coming at us hard and fast. I am not going to mention any distressing items inContinue reading “Now You Know: Writing Historical Fiction In a Dangerous Present”

Why We Are Not Done with World War I

Audio of this blog entry available here: I was at a lovely dinner with some other novelists recently (after a long hiatus from that world) and one of my dining companions, whose sharp narrative style I admire a lot and envy a little, told me: “I can’t publish my Victorian novels traditionally because publishers keepContinue reading “Why We Are Not Done with World War I”

Lucia’s War – Dramatis Personae

These people have been populating my head for the past while, so I want to share them with you – I’m looking forward to readers getting to know them better next year, if they don’t recognise them already, that is! For the gentlemen in Lucia’s life, I also have visuals 🙂 Lucia Percival, by theContinue reading “Lucia’s War – Dramatis Personae”

And The Singing Will Never Be Done

11/11/1918 Everyone Sang Everyone suddenly burst out singing; And I was filled with such delight As prisoned birds must find in freedom, Winging wildly across the white Orchards and dark-green fields; on – on – and out of sight. Everyone’s voice was suddenly lifted; And beauty came like the setting sun: My heart was shakenContinue reading “And The Singing Will Never Be Done”

A Legend and an Inspiration: Jessye Norman, Dramatic Soprano

I learned today, with sadness, of the opera singer Jessye Norman’s passing at the age of 74. She was a vocalist who had the power to move mountains, and a deeply serious musician. Her loss is mourned all over the world. During my research for Lucia’s War I have listened to many singers,  but it’s safeContinue reading “A Legend and an Inspiration: Jessye Norman, Dramatic Soprano”

Things You Learn Listening to an Audiobook You Wrote

Today marks five years since White Feathers was launched. Weird to think it was so long ago! In honour of this, I’ve decided to write about the experience of listening to the audiobook that came out much more recently, and what I learned from it. I haven’t read very many accounts of what it’s like forContinue reading “Things You Learn Listening to an Audiobook You Wrote”