Another Week, Another Edit

Last week I was glad to finish one edit – this week I have another. It’s one of the more accurate observations, the fact that all writing is rewriting. I estimated that my first novel was the result of reading and rereading my manuscript somewhere in the region of thirty five times. By the end … Continue reading

The Last Week of Work

IMG_20150518_110725

Sorry to have been quiet last week, but I was working on the latest book. I still am, which is why this is likely to be a short blog too. However, it occurred to me that I ought to share the results of my last week’s work. I am in the period which I normally … Continue reading

Getting the Ideas Right

Simple to use, easy to create handy outlines and plans

This is one of those little posts where I discuss the way that I get things done. Not that my methods will work with everyone. They certainly won’t! However, if you are trying to write up a report for the boss, or get ideas down for an important essay, or even a dissertation, and you just … Continue reading

Trials and Irritations!

How my desk looked yesterday!

This is one of those blogs where I have a brief rant. And why not? I’m sitting here before a computer that is gleaming and lovely, when outside the birds are singing, the sun is shining and  … yes, I’m sitting here indoors, in a Dartmoor granite house that is freezing. It’s so cold I’m wearing … Continue reading

Distractions All the Way

The look that says, 'You mug. I woudn't have done that.'

One of the hardest aspects of writing is the fact that there are so many damnably attractive alternatives. You sit at the desk and try to focus on the day ahead. That involves thinking about the coming scenes, planning, plotting, getting the mind into the right frame for envisioning bloody murder or a battle scene, … Continue reading

Interview with Karen Maitland

_GMH2742

I was lucky enough to meet Karen Maitland some years ago at the Lincoln Festival, and we hit it off immediately. We had a great afternoon with a large audience, and at the end of it, I invited her to join Medieval Murderers. Since then, she’s been a hugely popular member of our group. However, … Continue reading

Technology

Welcome to another Jecks wittering. There are times when I sit at my desk and type and think about all kinds of happy things. There are times when I happily wallow in blood and guts in my mind – which is why I, like most crime writers, am such a well-balanced, pleasant, amiable fellow. I … Continue reading

Big Data!

Painting of Josselin Castle, Britanny

I was reading in a magazine an article by the excellent Simon Brett earlier today. It was an obituary for Phyllis James and mentioned that some time ago, while talking about writing, they discussed the worst questions authors are asked. My own favourite worst is, “Where do your books sell?” It’s a natural question. It’s … Continue reading

Review The Raven’s Head

_GMH2742

    I first met Karen some ten years ago now, at a literary festival in Lincoln, and I was delighted to do so. Only a few weeks before I had read her stunning and evocative book THE COMPANY OF LIARS, and it had blown me away. I was fascinated by her depiction of a … Continue reading

Author incomes – when does the money come in?

Painting of Nine Maidens near Belstone.

This is a quick post to answer the question I have been asked several times recently, which is: how soon are authors paid for their work? Oh, boy, I remember the day Marion Donaldson called me to confirm that Headline wanted to buy my first book, and that she wanted another two titles in the … Continue reading