Ça Commence

It’s time for good thoughts. Well, it’s never NOT a time for good thoughts — what I mean is that it’s time for them to be focused on a specific area. The Novel – about which I’ve been very quiet – is now ready to be sent out to anyone interested in reading it. And then the other process begins: the quest for an agent … Continue reading Ça Commence

The Approaching Process

My capacity for self-censorship knows no limits. Every time I think of something I could potentially write here, I am immediately paralysed by the notion that it might upset someone, or it might not cover all the possible angles of the subject in question, or it might break a confidence, or it might be misinterpreted, and so on.

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2019 Film Reviews – 40: The Age Of Innocence [dir. Martin Scorsese; 1993]

When you’ve watched a movie several times, you enter into a wonderful sort of relationship with it: its main beats and incidents become so familiar to you that you can almost push them into the background and focus on aspects you may not have considered before. In my most recent viewing of Martin Scorsese’s masterful adaptation of Edith Wharton’s The Age Of Innocence, I was … Continue reading 2019 Film Reviews – 40: The Age Of Innocence [dir. Martin Scorsese; 1993]


Here’s a question for you: is it all right to give money as a gift? If your answer is an immediate, unqualified Yes, then don’t read on. You’ll probably find the rest of this post needlessly convoluted and pedantic. But if your gut tells you that there’s something wrong with handing over cash on someone’s birthday or at Christmas, then join the club. A book I … Continue reading Green


Today’s post is a bit of a cheat, because it contains words which I can’t claim as my own. I’m sharing them with you because… well, let’s just say they resonated. They’re taken from today’s Woman’s Hour interview with Zadie Smith. Z Smith: Novels are such a mess. Novels make you feel sick when you’re writing them. You hate them when you’ve finished them. … J … Continue reading Russet


I remember, as a teenager, being fascinated by the concept that still objects can be said to possess as much momentum as cannon balls hurtling through the sky. If momentum is a measure of an object’s resistance to a change in its velocity, then still objects possess momentum too, because they resist having their velocity changed. In other words, they’d rather not move. In case you hadn’t already … Continue reading Pink


The whole ‘pen to paper’ game feels odd at the moment. I’ve spent three years working on The Only Children and it’s now ready to be sent to agents and anyone else who’d care to read it. The agony and the uncertainty have resulted in 60,000 pretty coherent words. I’m trying to decide what to write next but I’m also making an attempt to deconstruct … Continue reading Peach


Big news out of the way first: draft #2 of the novel is as ready as it’s ever going to be. Agents across the country will be bombarded from January. Please keep your fingers crossed! Now that several years’ worth of effort have reached a phase of transition, I find myself wondering what to write about next. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I don’t … Continue reading Regress


I’ve said this before and I have no doubt whatsoever that I will continue to say it again and again: I find writing hard. There are loads of reasons for this, but the one on my mind right now is that I never seem to be able to shake off the feeling that the ideas behind my words are embarrassingly banal. It’s a paralytic state … Continue reading Knit