100 Days of Writing: Days 16-21

Day 16 of #100daysofwriting and I am at the end of Draft 7 of a 6,000 word story. This means in roughly 50 hours I have gone through several drafts, in this one before the edits I have been ruthless pulling out anything that doesn’t add anything to the story. For example, there is a sequence between…

100 Days of Writing: Days 10-15

Day 10 of #100daysofwriting and a walk ends with me finding a hardback gem in the charity shop. Day 11 of #100daysofwriting and I amazed that (A) I have made it this far, (B) how much work can be achieved in just 30mins or 1 hour. It’s as if the world recedes to a distant muffled fall, you know…

100 Days of Writing: Days 4-9

Day 4 of #100daysofwriting and I am in a the midst of the old kitchen, which seems apt as I am writing about goose fat and its three uses. Day 5 of #100daysofwriting the B&B my story is set in owes much to a place I went past on the 617 bus for two years when I was 16-18….

100 Days of Writing: Days 1-3

Started on #100daysofwriting slipping into a short story or two never completed. Evening 2 of #100daysofwriting and in the hour before putting my son to bed I am pondering the origin of the B&B in my story, part Wigan bus trips in my teens and working in hotels later on. Hotels have always been a place of stories they…

Social Media Listings

Be wary! Be very wary! All hail the New Year list! Yes, those lists that are prevalent after the fat food and drink that faded our memories. Tell us ten books you read! Tell us all about ten albums that defined your teenage years! List ten people who broke your fucking heart! We have all…

A Farewell to Creative Writing

I have in many ways, from workshops to residential and academia, taught creative writing since my mid-twenties. I have been proud to teach those that have gone on to success, those who continue to write but note at undergraduate level the high proportion of those writing students who never write again. My last year of…

The Lost Student

She strutted into my classroom nestled among students you knew were going to quit. It’s an awful thing to say but after awhile teaching can make you judgemental, you categorise, you’re taught to do that, to see the activists, the theorists, the troublemakers. And boy was she a troublemaker but there was something there devoid…

Walking Workgroup with Andrew Oldham at Saddleworth Literary Festival

WALKING WORKGROUP WITH ANDREW OLDHAM BOOK EARLY TO AVOID DISAPPOINTMENT   Walking With Poetry & Landscape 9:00am – 12:00, Sunday, 2nd October, 2016 Ammon Wrigley’s poems have been woven into the Saddleworth hills, valleys and villages. Even our pubs frequent his poetry. This workshop is open to those interested in writing poetry about landscape. It…

Writer’s Space

A few days ago I told you all about my office and how I fought valiantly to get it back from beneath a quagmire. This is me in a fervent plea to have an office space. It’s affectionately known as, ‘writer having hissy fit’.  Now, a few of you have asked me why it is…

Losing A Dumping Ground, Gaining An Office

I had a a hissy fit recently, there I’ve said it. I had a full blown throw-my-toys-out-of-a-moving-bath-paddy. Why would a full grown man do such a thing? I hear you say. Literally, I do hear you say, only my neighbour reads this blog and they wanted to know why me and my wife where screaming…

Problems With Speech

Yesterday I gave a presentation, it was a mock one for one that I am doing tomorrow and though I knew the people I was doing it to, fear overtook me. I can talk quite easily to crowds of people, I can have family, friends in the audience but when I am told I have…

In Defence of Idealism

Today I have been called an idealist. You’d think this is something to applaud but not when it is married with, ‘you don’t live in the real world’. I have a real problem with people who think idealism is something bad when it comes to society and politics. A bedrock of democracy, liberty and freedom…