Win a proof of The Long Fall

The marvellous DEAD GOOD BOOKS are running a competition to win one of ten The Long Fall proofs.

It’s easy to enter!

Catch me if you can!

I’ve just been updating my events list up until June. There are a few missing because they are embargoed, and I’ve got a whole lot more in July and September which I’m not yet allowed to talk about. But have a look, and please come and see me if I’m coming to a venue . . . → Read More

Writing on Trains (again)

On the train during my Harrogate residency

On the train during my Harrogate residency

Amtrak have taken inspiration from the idea Sam Eades and I hatched for writers’ residencies on trains!

As a past Writer in Residence on East Coast Rail, I did a piece yesterday for the BBC World Service on the whole business.

. . . → Read More

Write it all down

My three 1980 notebooks

I am a great fan of notebooks. I have always kept what I call an Everything Book: just one journal that I carry everywhere with me in which I put everything: notes taken at meetings; ideas for stories;  word or line sketches of things that take my fancy; eavesdroppings; doodles (rather . . . → Read More

Happy Holidays!

Have a peaceful and restful time. Or, if you’re like me, spend the entire holiday period cooking, clearing up and failing to delegate. It’s all fun, . . . → Read More

Writer in Residence on a bus!


This week I’m based in Harrogate and journeying between Ripon and Leeds on the glamorous, leather-seated number 36 bus, stopping off at the many wonderful places in between and talking to the people who live and work there and who ride and drive the bus, which runs every fifteen minutes along the route. I’m finding it . . . → Read More

How NaNoWriMo stopped my fear and helped me find my fourth career

(This post expands on a NaNoWriMo pep talk I wrote a couple of years back).

Are you at the end of the first week of NaNoWriMo 2013? If so, congratulations!

If you are (and even if you’re not), it’s likely that you will be very familiar with this scary thought:

When you start to create something, . . . → Read More

Genre bender

So when Agent Simon sent my manuscript out into the world of publishing, he told me that I had written a piece of Crime Fiction.

Crime Fiction? I said, mildly appalled.

Not having had any dealings with publishing before, I thought to be classified as a writer of genre fiction was somewhat demeaning. This is an example . . . → Read More

The First Reader

What a first reader looks like

When the first proof copies of Cuckoo were distributed, I likened the feeling to taking my knickers off in public.**

But I have found something in this writing process far more challenging even than that, and two weeks ago, on holiday on France, I had to go through it . . . → Read More

Emerges, blinking…

Oh dear, this writer’s blog has been a bit of a builder’s house for the past couple of months.

Well, it isn’t because I have been idle. Quite the reverse. I’ve been busy finishing my fourth novel, the first of  my new two-book deal with Headline and life, blog and all but essential functions have been . . . → Read More