2020 – A New year!

A new year is always a time to take stock, to think about things, and plan and scheme! This year is going to be one of change for me. I’ve finally taken back the rights to half my books from Simon and Schuster and will be working with a number of other publishers to market … Continue reading

Working While Family’s on Holiday

There is no doubt that writing is a great deal easier (for me) when school keeps my family at bay. My wife helps at the local college. When teachers were off sick, away on training, or otherwise engaged, the school used to call in qualified teachers through an agency. But agencies tend to charge large … Continue reading

Writing and Editing

And so, having disposed of the copy edit last week, I am now reliably informed (Natasha is never wrong) that Severn House will post the proofs of the next Jack Blackjack story to me today, so I’ll have to work through them from tomorrow or Friday. It’s an odd job, being a writer. You need … Continue reading

Hoarding Can Be Good

Okay, I admit it, I am pretty bad for hoarding. Look at my bookshelves. I am not going to read every one of these again. In fact, I suspect only perhaps 15% of them will be read. I have books I adore (and know pretty much off by heart), and which I cannot get rid … Continue reading

Writing in the Cold!

It is rare indeed that I can wake up, stare out towards the moors, and see snow smothering the top of Cosdon Beacon. This is all wrong. The snows should not continue into April. I am happy enough to wake to the sight of snow in February and March, but those months have gone. I … Continue reading

Book reviews

I made it a firm policy many years ago that I would not give a bad review to someone else’s work. It’s not because I am a particularly kind person. I have most definitely read several books that truly did not deserve those hours of my life. Those are hours I could have spent with … Continue reading

Nothing Succeeds Like Failure

This title appealed to me for two reasons today. The first is, yesterday I put up a video that demonstrated my utter incompetence with technology. I had tried to make a video recording of opening a parcel. Not, you would think, the hardest thing to do. However, the camera decided to go into a bit … Continue reading

Why Are Books Good?

We are blessed with another splendid day. It’s confusing, though, to be sitting indoors, huddled in warm clothes, and then, on wandering outdoors, to find that it’s too hot for anything other than shirtsleeves. Today started very well, thanks to a delightful teacher called Mark, who wrote to thank me for my notes on writing. … Continue reading

Tuesday, it’s Spring, and I’m stuck in the office typing!

There really doesn’t seem to be much doubt that Spring is here. The crocuses and snowdrops have died, and even the daffodils are disappearing. In their place celandines are appearing, the bluebells are about to pop, and the fields have taken on a brighter hue. Which is frustrating as hell, since I’m sitting in my … Continue reading

Friday Working

For the last couple of weeks I’ve been running short lucky draws for a few items. Last week it was a pocket notepad and pen, which were soon snapped up. There were some 120 people who asked for that. This week it’s been busier – The Keyboard Company had given me a Filco Majestouch Minila … Continue reading