Choosing a Title

A short thought today on titles – specifically, choosing one for your story or novel or poem. Each time I start a new post here I am invited to fill in the “Title” section at the top. I used to struggle with this. I tried to come up with something creative and intriguing and clever, […]

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Ten tips to beat writer’s block

This is an extension of my last post (Writing tips: come and get ’em). It repeats some of the tips, but I’ve added five more, and some other new stuff. Keep reading. “Writing is easy: All you do is sit staring at a blank sheet of paper until drops of blood form on your forehead.” – […]

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Writing tips: come and get ’em

I’ve just added a new string to my bow: as part of my business I now offer a Writing Advice service as well as proofreading, editing and writing assistance. Check out the services I offer here. This came about because in the course of proofreading and editing book manuscripts and other documents, I found I was spending […]

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The Book Exchange

I’ve achieved some rather major literary goals this year, and last night I celebrated with two lovely women. There’s me in the middle. (Those holes in my top are a design feature, not a result of drunken undressing in the dark. I wish.) On the right is Joanna, and to the left is Sara: the […]

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How to Avoid Huge Ships

I want to share with you a marvellous book I was gifted earlier this year. I’m the first to admit I am a little anally retentive. That’s one of the reasons being a proofreader is the perfect profession for me – I love finding mistakes and correcting them. (Friends and acquaintances reading this: you may now scrape […]

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The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova

Originally posted on Joanna and Sara read books:
Hi, Patricia. – Hi! Lucky you. You’re our guest reviewer! – Yay! (laughing, while eating her tenth piece of apple scroll) I know you love this book and you’ve been itching to review it since you learnt that Joanna and I review books. – Where is Joanna?…

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Great new blog for book lovers

My dear friend Sara has just started a new blog, and it’s going to be fantastic. She and her dear friend, Joanna (whom I like very much but don’t know very well), interview each other about books they’ve been reading, then transcribe the interviews. What a fabulous idea! And why didn’t I think of it? […]

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Why good grammar matters

“Sticklers Unite!” is the rallying cry from Lynne Truss in her #1 New York Times bestseller for grammar nerds, Eats, Shoots and Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation. I’m a stickler and proud of it. And not a closeted one, either. My profession—proofreader, editor and writer—is just a tiny giveaway, for a start. Then […]

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Narnia Revisited

I’ve started to read C.S. Lewis’s classic The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe to my seven-year-old daughter. She’s past the stage of having to look at pictures on every page of a book. She can now sit still, eyes wide and settled on the middle-distance, listening to the story and letting it come to life […]

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Stephen King’s “On Writing”

I’ve recently finished Stephen King’s On Writing. I loved it. I originally downloaded it on my Kindle, but after finishing it I immediately ordered it online so I could have a hard copy to scribble over and highlight. I would like to share a few of those highlights with you. Firstly, a reality check: When […]

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