Train, planes and … Well, just trains, really.

I am not good with trains. A few months ago I went visit some excellent friends near Windsor, and then on to stay at the house of some other friends. I had a great evening. Too great, really. Spike drove me into the station the next morning, and the rush hour was not good. When … Continue reading

Toronto – Bloody Words 2014

I really have been inordinately lucky this year. One thing I always wanted to do, when I was young, was to take every opportunity to travel. I was hugely fortunate because my father took us to Austria, Italy and even Kenya. I saw a lot of the world when I was a teenager. Later I … Continue reading

Tripping again!

Here in Britain, we have a new education leader who has been excoriated in the media and by teachers since he took his job. His name? Michael Gove. Mr Gove is a man who invariably causes fury. He has stopped increasing funding for schools and colleges, he has cut budgets all over, he has presided … Continue reading

New projects!

Every so often a project comes along that intrigues me, and recently I’ve had another one. Ever since I first saw the Arnolfini picture by Van Eyck – Jean Arnolfini and Jeanne Cenani, his wife, by Jan Van Eyck (1434)  – which, from memory, was when I found as an illustration inside the Folio edition … Continue reading

YouTube? I Tube

There are some aspects of a writing career that just get in the way. There is no other way to look at it. When I started out (twenty years ago now, God help us!) the job was easy. An author was supposed to write. As my friend Quintin Jardine likes to remind me: “Writers write … Continue reading

A Review and Author Interview: Anthony Riches – THE EMPEROR’S KNIVES

The Emperor’s Knives by Anthony Riches, published by Hodder & Stoughton ISBN: 978 1 444 73191 in hardback for £14.99 and also available as ebook   A brief disclosure. I know Tony Riches. That’s hardly surprising. If there is a writer in the crime, historical or thriller market I don’t know, he or she must … Continue reading

Festivals and Cash!

It surely can’t have been such a long time since my last blog? I had thought I’d be writing up notes much more regularly than once in every eight weeks! Apologies for the long break, but there have been good reasons. Lots of work with the Royal Literary Fund helping students at Exeter university, finishing … Continue reading

And while in the middle of an edit …

I recently received a book to review: Nail Your Novel by Roz Morris. Now, I should quickly state that I don’t know this lady, except as a delightful correspondent on Twitter, so anything that follows you can assume is not biased. It is one of those books that will work for a lot of people. … Continue reading

Back to the Edit

Today I have settled down to work on the edits of my next book, Fields of Glory, which will be published next summer. Luckily there’s not too much to do, other than remove some unnecessary scenes and tighten some others. I say luckily, because as you can see, this isn’t the shortest book I’ve written! … Continue reading

Editors and Editing

Yesterday I had to give a talk to the Society of Editors and Proofreaders – and I had great fun! It is a constant source of astonishment to me, how many people say that they hate editors and all their kind. One friend of mine routinely tells how his was trained by the Gestapo, while … Continue reading