Showing posts from July, 2022

Headspace - the final frontier: N M Browne

I' ve been thinking about creativity recently – alas, not very creatively.  I'm interested in the 'where' and the 'when' of creativity rather than the 'how'.  On the 'where' I have always agreed with Woolf that a writer needs 'a room of one’s own,' but increasingly I think it is about having this mental space, headspace, whatever you choose to call that freedom from obligatory socialisation, chores, money-making labour for a limited amount of time: the physical place is less important than the mental space. (You will note I have separated money-making labour from creativity largely because it is increasingly difficult for the latter to be the former!) I haven’t been very productive of late and toyed with the idea of booking myself into a retreat, removing myself from the distractions of my normal life. I can picture it all very clearly. I’d pick somewhere beautiful by the water, the Lakes maybe or somewhere by the sea.   It would have exc

The Ex-Prime Minister - Chapter Five Andrew Crofts

 The fifth instalment of the on-going saga of the ex-prime minister   “Good God!” Phillipa could hardly bear to watch the screen. The headlines in the morning’s papers had warned her of some of what was coming, but the reality was even more confusing than she had expected. Felicity had explained the concept of First Dates to her, but she was still having trouble getting her head round the idea that anyone would want to undergo such an excruciating rite of passage in public, let alone someone with as many skeletons in their cupboard as Teddy. She was having trouble imagining what Teddy would be like on a date. She was pretty sure they had never experienced anything which could be described in those terms during their relationship. “This is going to be broadcast tonight?” “Unless we can find a legal way to block it,” Felicity confirmed. “But if we try anything like that, we run the risk of drawing even more attention to it, and fueling speculation as to what it is we are so keen to h

The Surprise of Poldark -- by Susan Price

The Poldark series "'I'm not sure," Ross said, 'that the maintenance and transaction of government is at all well served by the present system of representation and election...I have been taking more notice of the system as it exists in England today and it's like some ramshackle old coach of which the springs and swingle bar are long broke and there are holes in the floor from bumping over rutted roads. It should be thrown out and a new one built.'  Ross Poldark goes on to argue that a situation where sparsely populated Cornwall could send several MPs to Parliament (all of them the puppets of wealthy landowners), while the densely populated new cities of the North were often unable to return even one MP, was desperately unfair. The book from which I took this quote is 'The Four Swans', first published in 1976, when Graham was 68.  And here we are in 2022. Forty-six years after the book was published, two hundred and twenty-six years after it


  Yesterday my second full length novel was finally published. It has been a busy and exciting time in the run-up. The writing of the book was finished a long time ago - I long for those days! Now I am in the throes of the far less appealing marketing stage. Wouldn’t it be fun if we could just spend all our time writing, and not worry about getting our books sold and read? Sadly, that is not the way of things. My first book came out during lockdown. I was vaguely aware at the time of something called a book tour – where authors travel from place to place and talk to enthusiastic gatherings about their new release. I was frankly grateful that Covid just made all that getting out there impossible. But how to get my book talked about, seen, bought even? I was fortunate enough to be a part of a writers group who introduced me to the idea of a blog tour. This simple idea relies on recruiting bloggers and book reviewers who are willing to read and review your book on their blogs. I pla