My Life in 8 Words
Q. What is your motto or maxim?
A. Double your failure rate.
Q. Who are your favorite authors?
A. Alice Munro, Annie Proulx's short stories, Pat Barker - especially Union Street, Lorrie Moore, Hilary Mantel, Miriam Toews, Janet Frame, Daniel Jeffreys, A.A Milne, Ali Smith.
Q. Is there a book you love to reread?
A. Brokeback Mountain. I read it once every few months. And 'Walker Brother's Cowboy' by Alice Munro.
Q. What are your 5 favorite books of all time?
A. Close Range - Annie Proulx A Complicated Kindness - Miriam Toews Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte Union Street - Pat Barker The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie - Muriel Spark
Q. Do you have one sentence of advice for new writers?
A. Do it because you love it, read lots, delete solitaire from your computer and avoid white cider.
February 10, 2011I recently read an article about creative writing courses,written by David Peace, author of the compelling Red Riding Quartet http://tinyurl.com/4d453jg. He implies that the main aim ofstudents on writing courses is to acquire industry contacts. He says they “pay £10,000 to meet and listen to flocking agents and publishers”. These agents and publishers, he says, go to meet such students because it’s easier than reading unsolicited manuscripts that “might actually require them to exercise their own judgment (which due to the twin evils of cocaine and post-modernism have rendered most publishing people incapable of... see more
February 01, 2011Hiya. My novel, The Hunger Trace, comes out in March, so I'm counting down by writing a few bits about writing.
I don't mind admitting that my first book, Blackmoor, was rejected a fair few times before it sold. I didn't like admitting it at the time. Many of the rejections mentioned problems with the plot and structure. When S&S bought the book, Rochelle, my first editor, and I worked hard on that aspect, and I hope we turned it around.
But before Blackmoor sold, I had a bit of a crisis about the idea of plot. We hadn’t really studied story structure... see more