Category Archives : Blog

All my blog posts in one convenient location!

Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne My rating: 5 of 5 stars Today, reading a book about some people on a submarine may not evoke the startled sense of wonder that it must have in the 19th century. Nevertheless, when I read this book as a child, […]

Something’s fishy

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams My rating: 5 of 5 stars What can one say about The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy that hasn’t already been said? There are a plethora of reviews for this book, so what makes it so special to me personally? Part […]

I miss Douglas Adams

I carry around ideas. In my head are a number of concepts for books I want to write. Some of these have been with me since childhood, while others are more recent. But all of them I feel I have to write. At some point I must either, commit them to paper/keyboard, […]

The writer’s burden

Lord Foul’s Bane by Stephen R. Donaldson My rating: 5 of 5 stars Another of my favourite ever novels, Lord Foul’s Bane, features a main character, Thomas Covenant, who is depressing enough to be interesting. Indeed, it is the journey through this character’s tortured psyche which is perhaps the most […]

A tortured psyche

All fiction is derivative It’s amazing that we as authors can seem to come up with anything original when everything has been done before. After all, there are allegedly only seven stories in all the world, and all the novels, films, short stories, and graphic novels we write are just extensions of these archetypes. […]

We’ve derived

When I first began writing Copout I set the story in America. I lived in America, so it was only natural. But neither America, nor any other country, plays any part in the story, except inasmuch as the story has to be set somewhere. When I finished writing Copout, I […]

Here or there?

A Study in Scarlet by Arthur Conan Doyle My rating: 5 of 5 stars It begins as part of the memoirs of Dr Watson, told as if it was real. Throughout the story, for all we know it is a true recounting of something that really happened. Watson is back […]


The exercise in our Thursday night writing club was this. We were given a prompt, which is a line to begin writing with. After a minute or two of writing, the prompter interrupted us with another prompt, which we had to immediately insert into the story and continue writing. The […]

How not to do flash fiction

The Neverending Story by Michael Ende My rating: 5 of 5 stars It’s official. The Neverending Story is my favourite novel ever. I first learned about this book when I saw the film of the same name – a film that I thought was pretty awful, I’ll have you know. […]

I wished it would never end

One thing I was taught in screenwriting class was that you had to hook your audience in ten minutes or less. If they aren’t on your side by then, they probably never will be. Since Copout was originally written as a screenplay, popular movies gave me some inspiration. For instance, […]

Opening with action