The Notebook

When I first started writing my notebooks were large affairs as if to announce to the world that, ‘I am a writer.’ You have to recall the heady days before social media where people had conversations about real time events rather than memes, racist tweets and body shaming. Though the latter lurked in fashion magazines…

BBC National Short Story Award 2021

I am sat in a supermarket car park checking my work email. This is my writing work email and it has been a week of polite rejections. You need thick skin in this business. So, I am sat there and up pops an email with the subject line ‘BBC National Short Story Award 2021’ –…

The Art of Reading

I did a reading last night at Read to Write in South Yorkshire via Zoom and one of the audience, Richard Schramm, drew a picture of me. I do love a drawing over photos, it catches the energy of the reading. I know Zoom events can be hard going but for me, as a disabled…

World Poetry Day

My commission, ‘I have become the Green Man’, for World Poetry Day is now up here. I would like to thank Manchester City of Literature and Manchester Poetry Library for commissioning me during a challenging time.

Publicity for New Commission

Some recent publicty from the Manchester City of Literature and Manchester Poetry Library commission to celebrate UNESCO’s World Poetry Day with a poetry film to be broadcast on Sunday 21st March 2021. I have been commissioned beside Ali Al-Jamri, Dom Conlon, Imtiaz Dharker and Roma Havers and other poets from fellow UNESCO Cities of Literature….

New Commission

I am proud to announce that I have been commissioned by Manchester City of Literature and Manchester Poetry Library to celebrate UNESCO’s World Poetry Day with a poetry film to be broadcast on Sunday 21st March 2021. I have been commissioned beside Ali Al-Jamri, Dom Conlon, Imtiaz Dharker and Roma Havers and other poets from…

A Tale Called Deathband

I have a new non-fiction story out at the moment which deals with grief, food shopping, Covid and music stars that didn’t live up to our expectations. You can read it at the wonderful The Real Story here. For those of you new to The Real Story, they are: ‘The Real Story is a writer development…

Where The Hell Have You Been?

Okay, you have the right to ask that. I mean I did tell you all at the start of 2020 I would blog more but then 2020 unfolded in all its magnificent and sphincter tightening glory. The world is not the world we came to in early 2020 and there is a growing fear with…

The Dangers of Nostalgia as History

Sometimes as a writer you look back at people you knew and wonder where they are. Friends, old lovers, passing acquaintances that pop into your head. It’s so easy to see all this through rose tinted glasses, summers that never ended, kisses that lingered and toys lost in yards, that all now seem now to…

Structuring A Novel

I want to grab a pair of scissors and start cutting up my novel. Maybe I should employ a Dada technique and chuck it up in the air and see how it lands. Where it lands is what the structure will be but I am century too late for this kind of idea and there…

Reasons To Be Cheerful

I am going to start with a concern. Covid-19 has been horrific for the UK, there is no way of getting around this or deny it. It has though shown the potential for us to stamp down on pollution and my concern is that many will see this as the answer to #ClimateChange. That it…