Beginning a New Story

29132224885_0323cb3cee_o

This week I’m embarking on a new novel, and I’m going back to my roots. Yes, it’s a crime novel. I’ve had a few people ask me how I actually get started with a book. The simple answer is, I don’t know. The ideas begin when I have a basic concept occur to. Sometimes that … Continue reading

The Research Into Author Incomes

wpid-1404820284073.jpg

I’ve mentioned this before, but it’s worth reconsidering this week. The Authors Licensing and Collecting Society is a marvellous organisation that helps authors by collecting odd amounts of money. For example, I recently had some few pounds because someone in Germany had been copying pages from one of my novels for use in classes in … Continue reading

Tripping again!

My last trip to Canada - It's a long way down from the CN Tower!

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

YouTube? I Tube

West Henstill House - where I dreamed up Templar Series and which ended up as Simon's home near Sandford

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

YouTube If You Want To

A horrible sight. A grimacing author hoping to make a video that won't scare away all readers!

There are times when it seems like there’s no time to sit at the desk and write, and this has been one of those weeks. University was – well, mayhem is a little too polite, I guess. From nine in the morning to four thirty, Monday and Tuesday, I had no time for even a … Continue reading

Blogs and Sales!

Asparawriting booklet cover

I have been a keen user of WordPress for some time now. It’s fast, it’s easy, and it lets me blog without having to worry too much about the sillier aspects of updating computers. In short, I like it. But not always. Sometimes you find little irritations and glitches that get in the way. For … Continue reading

Writing – Six Faults

The proofs so far this year. Is it any wonder my eyesight's fading along with my brain?

I was looking at a blog today, and it sparked an idea. The idea was, thinking of the worst advice ever given to aspiring authors. Where on earth would you start with a piece like that, I wondered. And then I started thinking … So here goes. My favourite bits of dreadful advice. 1. You … Continue reading

Critics – Be Kind

Typos? No, not many!

There are many critics in the world. And they have suffered some horrible comments in the past. Tynan said, “A critic is a man who knows the way but can’t drive the car.” Sadly, there are all too many critics around today. The advent of the internet has created an explosion of critical writing as … Continue reading

Random Thoughts

A little holiday reading. My basic research.

  It was a while ago that I first spoke with the folks at Cult Pens. At the time I was desperate for some special ink colours, and I was delighted to learn that I could buy them from a company based not far from my house. Tiverton has always had a special importance for … Continue reading

What a week!

Tools of the trade. Books and computers - and all cost money!

I have never tried to keep a diary before. It’s one of those tasks that has passed me by. Generally, I’ve always thought that they are journals for people with too much time on their hands. Time … How to organise it, how to make best use of it. These are questions which are always … Continue reading