Author Archives: joss1524

The Swallows of Summer

Are you heading off on holiday or into a traffic jam or both? Ted Hughes’s wonderful poem ‘Work and Play’ encapsulates the contradictory nature of this time of year – swallows soaring in the sky at work, and people stuck … Continue reading

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How tennis balls can help your writing

‘Sometimes I bounce back. Sometimes it’s more of a dull thud.’ That’s what the heroine in a novel I recently submitted says, and if it strikes a chord with you, you’re not alone. As a writer, not so long ago … Continue reading

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When the romance is dying…

This month I’m guest blogging at Savvy Authors on what to do when your romance is dying…http://bit.ly/128nzuc

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Retro food – a personal flavour

In all fashions or fads — whether music, art or clothes — a trend rarely arrives fully fledged, and like leggings or high heels, keeps on returning. To me, retro food is dishes from approximately the end of rationing in … Continue reading

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In defence of January

January is the bad-boy month of the year, the one so many people love to hate.  Not me; like most romantic novelists, I’ve always had a weakness for a rake who’s just waiting for a brave, beautiful and probably poor … Continue reading

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Best Indie film of 2012 — Beasts of the Southern Wild

Storming through this year’s independent film festivals, Beasts of the Southern Wild is the surprisingly wonderful feature from first-time director Benh Zeitlin. Having wowed critics enough to be placed highly on ‘Film of the Year’ lists, and with heavyweight endorsements … Continue reading

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Round robin

Dear Derek I can’t believe it’s that time of year again,  and that here I am, once more sending my Christmas greetings. I’m sure you’ll understand when you see this rather impersonal word-processed letter – they’re awful aren’t they? But … Continue reading

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Time — and time again

What is the shape of time? Scientists and philosophers have spent years (and huge research budgets) debating this, and come up with countless theories but no hard-and-fast conclusions. Writers explore time in other ways. Emily Brontë was one of the … Continue reading

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September Film Review — Untouchable

It seems an unlikely hit—a French comedy about a quadriplegic—but Untouchable (2012) is now the number one top-grossing French-produced film ever made. Worldwide it has sold three times as many tickets as the Oscar-winning The Artist, its closest competitor. Directed by Olivier Nakache … Continue reading

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And no, it’s not Valentine’s Day

Orchids are strange exotic creatures—my mother always mistrusted them, much preferring the less suggestive bloom of the English rose. ‘Besides,’ she used to say, misquoting Alice, ‘What’s the use of a flower without any scent?’ Prophetic words, for when she … Continue reading

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