The writer is a lonely hunter


Shelfie: publications that include my stories



I’m making the most of my recent success with Elle magazine – thank you for all your comments and encouragement. While I don’t want to be the sort of blogger who spends posts boasting, it is gratifying to celebrate the markers of progress. I started writing in 2009, and had my first story published in 2010 with a payment of £25. Other stories and flash fiction followed, both online and in anthologies. My shelfie shows where you’ll find my writing in print and I’d like to thank all those who have made it possible  for my stories to reach an audience. These include:

All the time, new opportunities to become published are available. I’ll try to keep you updated with these through regular blog posts. Good luck with getting your writing out there.



This Little World, an anthology by Dorset Writers

51DPQ9oOlwL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_You may remember back in January, I wrote a post about creative writing workshops which were held in rural locations around Dorset to promote creative writing. (You can read the post here.) The workshops were offered by steering group members of the Dorset Writers’ Network and encouraged participants to submit a 500 word story, based in Dorset, for inclusion in an anthology. This Little World is the result of hard work by all those involved.

The stories in this anthology are by writers from 11-70 years. Each story is a real gem of no more than 500 words in length which celebrates the diversity of the county. The anthology is available in paperback through Amazon, click here for details. An ebook of the anthology will follow.


What I remember, a new anthology by EVB press

51l8IL14LYL._AA160_I’ve a story in a new anthology titled What I Remember published by EVB Press. In The Game, I use 500 words to tell the events of an abusive weekend through backwards chronology. I became interested in Everyday Victim Blaming when I heard Louise Pennington talking about the campaign  on Radio 4. The organisation reviews media coverage of violence against women and children, and identifies where news reports have overt victim blaming content. Incidents include the rape girls who are so drunk that they cannot stand up, yet men claim sex is consensual. Media coverage offers excuses to support the abuser rather than showing compassion for the victim.

Other writers who have stories in the anthology include Cath Bore, Carol Fenlon and Mandy Huggins.

Click here to purchase a copy of the anthology – all proceeds support the organisation.

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This Little World: workshops and publication launch

Please find details of a writers’ day in Dorchester with flyer and booking form below:



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Dorchester Literary Festival

Victorian Gallery, Dorset County Museum

Victorian Gallery, Dorset County Museum

The first Dorchester Literary Festival runs from 23-25 October 2015 with events at Duke’s Auctioneers and the delightful Victorian Gallery in the Dorset County Museum. I’m a volunteer steward at Desert Island Books with Tracy Chevalier and I’m planning attend the session delivered by Dom Joly on Friday. You’ll also find me helping at the Young Peoples’ Story Slam on Saturday held at Dorchester Library.


If you’re able to attend any of these events, I look forward to seeing you.

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Back to normal

I’ve finished the fourth week of a new job, have submitted my transfer paper to PhD and printed out what I hope will be the final draft of my novel How to be Brave. One last read through, then the manuscript will be off to a proof reader. We have had a house full of visitors and done several long walks. I’ve rejoined the Dorchester Film Society for the seventh year (very good film called Ida screened last week) and I’m continuing my work with the Dorset Writers’ Network. More news about from the network soon, including an exciting day for writers in November at Dorchester Library.

There are currently free writing workshops on offer in Dorchester with the Boris Starling. I’ve signed up for one on 6 November about plotting. You can find further details here.

Happy writing!


A week in Stoupa

I was fortunate this summer to be invited  to spend another week in Stoupa with Carol McGrath. This time I was also in the company of  contemporary and historical fiction writer, Liz Harris. We got into a regular routine of writing, swimming, talking and eating! I’ve written a little more about the area around Stoupa here. You may also be interested to know that Carol’s novel The Betrothed Sister, the last  in the Daughters of Hastings trilogy, is now available on Amazon. Here is a shot from an amazing restaurant at a village called Pigi in the mountains above Stoupa.




All quiet at the Writer is a Lonely Hunter

It’s been very quiet on this blog over the summer. While I have been busy writing, there has also been some time away. I had a fantastic week at the Edinburgh International Book Festival where I was introduced to writers including Etgar Keret, who talked about his recently published  The Seven Good Years. In this memoire, he shares the experience of living in Israel with parents who were holocaust survivors. The memoire covers the period from the birth of his son to the death of his father. I bought a copy of his short fiction titled Suddenly, a Knock on the Door and he signed the book in a unique style. And, although I’m not much of a photographer the light in Edinburgh one evening was so amazing that I took the shot below.

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Skylark Literary visits Shaftesbury, Dorset.

Leading London-based literary agency, Skylark Literary, is undertaking a tour of rural areas in order to reach writers unable to attend urban venues. The session will hosted by Storyslingers and offered on Friday 17 July, from 6:30-8:30pm at the Garden Room, Shaftesbury Gold Hill Museum, Gold Hill, Shaftesbury, Dorset SP7 8JW. The talk will cover the children’s publishing industry, followed by a Q&A session with particular reference to writing for young people. Author Kate Kelly will also be present to answer questions from the writer’s perspective. Everyone welcome.

Suggested donation £3

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Writing places: a new project

Thomas Hardy's Cottage

Thomas Hardy’s Cottage

The National Trust, Literature Works and the Poetry Archive have formed a new partnership to offer to offer a programme of events celebrating the literary heritage of the South West. The launch of the programme was held on 2 July (the birth date of Thomas Hardy) at Max Gate. As an invited guests, I toured the house, listened to Andrew Motion read from a forthcoming collection of poetry and found out more about the project. Five National Trust properties with strong literary connections, including Max Gate and Hardy’s Cottage,  will have professional writers appointed to act as writers-in-residence. The purpose is to explore ‘the domestic lives of some of the country’s greatest writers, revealing how the houses and landscape that they loved inspired them to create their masterpieces, and how these places continue to be relevant today’.  A programme of workshops and events will be developed so that writers and visitors can contribute to the project. Find out about developments as the programmes progress by visiting the Writing Places blog.

As a result of the launch, I’ve discovered it’s well worth visiting the Poetry Archive.  I spent a delightful couple of hours listening to poets read from their work. By following  a tour of the archive with Mark Grist and David Almond (there are many tours to choose from), I was introduced to new poetry, which I loved. The experience encouraged me to try my hand a writing a poem – the first one since school days!