Showing posts from June, 2023

Locked out: N M Browne

Sometimes being a writer is like being on the wrong side of a door, a glass door, that offers tantalising glimpses of the world on the other side.   When I was young, I just broke through it using whatever was at hand; determination, energy and ignorance mainly which, correctly wielded, are powerful tools. These days I peer through the misted glass, admiring the scenery. I go away and rifle through my office drawers. I find several dried up felt tip pens, a broken biro, a usb that no longer works and an aged roll of cellotape which appears to have no end. A sensible woman would throw them out, but this one observes that none of these dispiriting objects resembles a key and closes the drawer. The door waits.       On the other side, a dramatic storm is brewing. The sky is charcoal black and, as I watch, white lightning forks. Its afterburn dazzles me and I blink it away. I hope whoever lives there is safe: I have not met them yet, but I would care about them a great deal should I

A Brilliant Portrait of Publishing Today -- Andrew Crofts

  There's been a ton of hype about Yellowface by Rebecca F Kuang, a novel about today's publishing world, and every ounce of it is well deserved.  I can't imagine that anyone who has any connection to writing or publishing wouldn't love every moment of it - even the uncomfortable ones. It portrays exactly what it is like to be a struggling writer, exactly what it is like when you do find a publisher and end up disappointed with the results, and exactly what it is like when you finally hit the jackpot and become a bestseller, and a media sensation.  It is paced like a thriller, with the characters chasing one another through the moral maze of cancel culture, social media hate campaigns, and the thorny diversity issues of who has the right to write about what? There are moments when the reader wonders if it is ever right to write about anything, but Rebecca F. Kuang forges fearlessly ahead, kicking every sensitivity and taboo into touch. This is a fantastic, thoughtful,

In Memory of Karen Bush -- Susan Price

  Karen Bush KAREN BUSH (aka Madwhippet) was a founder member of Authors Electric and, indeed, edited and produced some collections of short stories by our members, as well as posting many blogs for us.  Karen was also a member, as was I, of a small group of writer friends, all members of The Scattered Authors Society. We kept in regular touch via email and Zoom. At the start of May 2023, we met for our ‘first Tuesday of the month’ Zoom and there was Karen, chatting and joking, as usual, with her beloved whippet, Dulcie, curled up on the sofa beside her.      Extract from 'Dulcie's Diary ': Pffft ... I has a cut on my paw. I have had it hibiscrubbed and now I am guarding it to keep Muvva away with any other stinging stuff she might want to put on it. If it needs to be any cleaner I has a perfectly good tongue thank you! Now pass me the chicken to help me recover ...     A few days later, around mid-May, Karen mentioned some stomach upsets. The rest of us sympathised