I started to study writing (but not actually doing it) in October 2002. I only started writing writing when I joined a hardworking online writing group in November 2003. Writing is writing, to me. See? Good.
One of the joys of working with an indie press is that you can say, ‘Hey, this text book has been out for a few years - I’d like to update, refresh, add some new chapters by fab writers, maybe do a little pruning?’ and they say, ‘Good idea - do it.’
The result is the terrific second edition of Short Circuit: Guide to the Art of the Short Story. Eight new chapters, new intro, sharper all round, I think - although the first edition was pretty good anyway. It’s been a huge privilege to be able to put together the text book I’d have liked when I started this writing lark myself, so thank you Salt Publishing.
2. ‘Short Circuit first edition (2009),
3. ‘Storm Warning’ (short stories on the theme of conflict, published 2010 by Salt),
4. ‘The Coward’s Tale’ (novel, published in UK in 2011 by Bloomsbury)
4.5 'The Coward’s Tale’ published in USA 2012
5. 'Short Circuit’ second edition (2013)
6. My debut poetry publication, ‘The Half Life of Fathers’ was published by Pighog Press in November and launched in Brighton. Again, a joy of working with an indie - I was at Gladstone’s Library in September, there was a literary fest, I was reading, and Pighog kindly produced some advance copies. Thank you Pighog.
|Little Owl, illustration by Lynn Roberts - from 'Ed's Wife and Other Creatures'|
So. Book number 7, and the one I have had more fun writing than any other, is now with my agent. This is the collection of tiny fictions called ‘Ed’s Wife and Other Creatures’, beautifully and cleverly illustrated by artist and poet Lynn Roberts. Lynn’s own collection of poems inspired by paintings in The National Gallery is due out in April, and I am hugely grateful to her for going with the flow when I changed the goalposts from ‘about ten’ illustrations to ‘oh they are so good, can each story have a drawing?’ when there are almost seventy stories. Thank to Lynn!
|Theology Room, Gladstone's Library|
|Part of The Western Front, at July 1916|