What's Your Story's Story?

How did you come to be writing your book? What inspired your story?

I was speaking to a friend recently, someone I've known since I was a child, and although our paths have parted, we've always held faith with one truth in our lives - we are writers.

Recently, she started to write a novel. We've discussed its development over the phone and one thing became clear the more we talked - the inspiration for her novel is linked back to the loss of a well loved individual in her life, not necessarily the loss itself but the place in her mind and her younger life that the experience has led her to remember.

The result is that she has an inspiring story to tell to an agent or a publisher about how her novel came about when she decides to seek publication, with a defined theme too.

That got me thinking about my own novel and the more I thought about it, the more I realised that I don't have that same inspirational clarity. I honesty can't tell you what inspired me to create…

What I'm doing this month - March

This is how March started where I live - snow.

My dog loved it. My teens loved it (and the resulting days off school). Being self employed at home, it wasn't quite so popular with me.

Theoretically, as a home worker the weather shouldn't affect me but with the teens home two days out of the last week, my dog constantly nagging to go out so she could roll in the snow (and then gift it to the rest of the house by shaking herself over anyone nearby and jumping on the sofas), and the fact that our unfinished house isn't the easiest to keep warm, I was a tad disturbed and disgruntled by the plentiful supply of snow.

Having said that, the snow is almost gone and today is grey and drizzly. Maybe the snow wasn't so bad after all.

This month, I launched the website for my new copy and content writing (with a side order of social media) business. You can find the website here. I'm also on Facebook and Twitter, and posted my first introductory blog post on the day of the lau…

Choice words for February

The word for 2017, so far, has been 'busy', in a good way. I'm not the only one living the busy life either. My email inbox is full of inspirational writing goodies so this month, I've three treats for you.

Suzannah Windsor Freeman's blog post, 3 Things Small-Space Living Taught Me about Writing talks about overcoming challenges but also about getting back to the basics of writing.

Elizabeth S Craig shares wisdom drawn from her personal experience in 5 Things About Being a Writer.

Finally, Joanna Penn of The Creative Penn shares her thoughts and advice on self doubt as a writer.

How to deal with self-doubt as a writer The Creative Penn

What I'm doing this month - February

If January was a gift, then February is a gem waiting to be chipped from a wall of rock.

In other words, there's a lot of good stuff ahead but I'm going to have to work hard to get it.

I'll be drinking plenty of (decaf) coffee and tea, researching much, putting plans into effect, and generally living with my nose to the grindstone.

And I'm loving it!


I've started on the website for my new copywriting business.

I love this stage of any project - the beginning where you bring together all the resources you'll need and plan away.

Having said that, I find it all too easy to switch into magpie mode and become distracted by all the shiny things.

"Ooh, pretty Wordpress theme. Look at the colourful photos. Should I make a video?" 
I'm rather proud of my logo. Have a look.

Murdering The Text

Although I'm shelving my next murder mystery play until my copywriting business is up and running, the idea pokes at me now and then for attention.


Photo Inspiration for January

This month's photo inspiration is a shot I took while out walking the dog.

It was one of those days ('brisk' as my father would have called it) that pinches your cheeks and hurries you along.

The grass was crisp over the frozen soil beneath, and as my dog investigated a nearby tree, I took a moment to, well, just take a moment.

Normally, I look up. On that day, I looked down.

Peering up from beneath the layer of frost were three daisies. While the winter world lay dormant and still, these tiny flowers dared to show their faces.

This year is all about (more) change for me and these daisies, surviving in the chill, reminded me that to make progress, I will have to run the risk of poking my head outside my comfort zone.

What do these daisies in the frost mean to you? Survival? Hope? Perseverance? Let me know. I'd love to know what they inspire you to write.

7 ways that walking the dog makes me a better writer

Now that my teens have returned to school and my husband and I are settled into our working routines, my morning dog walks have fallen back into place.

As soon as I get home after ferrying my teens to school, the dog takes her usual stance in the hallway ready to be fitted out for her daily adventure.

I have to admit that faced with a grey, rainy morning, the prospect of donning the wellies and baring my face to the elements rarely appeals, but once I'm out there it's a different matter. I enjoy the time with my (mostly) silent companion, pootling along muddy paths.

Want to know why our time together makes me a better writer? Well, I'll tell you.

1. Physical health

Life as a home-based worker can be sedentary to the extreme. Add to that the fact that I work on a computer and there's a recipe for piling on the pounds.

I'm not old, but I do fall into the 'middle aged' category, so not everything works as well as it used to. I need to work harder to stay fit …

My Storytelling Superpower

Ever wondered what your storytelling superpower is? When I received an email from diy MFA asking just this question, I was intrigued.

The email was two-fold, offering a fun quiz but then asking us to celebrate our strengths as a writer.

My quiz result was this:

The Underdog

You are the quintessential underdog storyteller and your superpower is creating relate-able charaters who have a deep desire to change something in themselves or in the world around them. From rags-to-riches narratives to epic David-and-Goliath-style battles you craft stories with high stakes and compelling characters your readers can't help but love.

I wasn't sure if I liked this to begin with but then, as I began to apply the idea of 'underdog' to my novel, I realised that my result was spot on.

My teenage protagonist, Steve is bullied at school and when he's thrown into an underworld of magic and crime, he's way out of his depth. He feels powerless and yet he struggles to not only right th…