On publishing Small Town Blues, my second and probably last novel.
‘I am going to take a heroine whom no one but myself will much like,’ wrote Jane Austen of Emma Woodhouse. Likewise, Evan, my central character, is not a vote-winner. He too is arrogant, vain and callow at the start of the novel, but he passes through an arc of self-discovery and by the end has gained, like her, a degree of maturity.
(2) Show don’t tell I’ve been thoroughly irritated by this advice ever since an agent accused me of ignoring it. It seems to me a neat formula trotted out blithely. So I want to examine and challenge it. First, is the distinction between showing and… Read More »Bones of Contention: an occasional series
Write about what you know I’ve long thought of writing a series of pieces for the newsletter on contentious issues in writing. So I’ll begin with the above. For me, the problem here is the suggestion that we should confine ourselves to writing about what… Read More »Bones of Contention: an occasional series
Won second prize at the Cambridge Writers Short Story Competition 2107 It was a fair-sized gathering. A few friends and neighbours, some aunts and uncles, a couple of cousins. His parents liked to throw a party now and again, and their Hallowe’en night had become… Read More »Beryl – by Les Brookes
Awarded third prize at the Cambridge Writers Short Story Competition 2016. This is a weird experience. A first for me. Never been to such a gathering. Suits, hats and rosettes everywhere. The place bustling with self-delighted busybodies. What did someone call them? The chattering classes?… Read More »Requital – by Les Brookes
Highly commended in Cambridge Writers Short Story Competition 2014. And after all she was not a prying mother. She had always respected his privacy, his right to live his own life without interference. She had never so much as passed comment, had she? Well, nothing… Read More »Tracking James -by Les Brookes
Awarded first prize in Cambridge Writers Short Story Competition 2014. Oh, hullo. Is that Stew? It’s Rog. Yeah, that’s right, Rog. Rog Molesworth. Bit of a shock, eh? This voice from the spirit world? No, honestly, it’s not a hoax call. Yeah, I know it’s… Read More »Wimbledon to Wood Green – by Les Brookes