After NaNoWriMo

If you took part in NaNoWriMo this year then congratulations – however many extra words you created.

Think about what you want to do with this work. Some writers are happy just to have set the words down. They may have written something close to their heart that isn’t for sharing with an audience.

On the other hand, if you are aiming for publication, then make some time before Christmas to take a look and see what the possibilities are. NOTE – I didn’t suggest writing anything yet. Just list all the ways you could use the material you have created.

For instance – you may find you could create:

  • A collection of poems
  • A short story sequence
  • A play
  • A novel
  • A memoir

The Girl With Amber Eyes

This is now available as an audio book! If you would like a free promo code to download this – then please get in touch via the contact page of this website.

You can listen to a free sample on my Amazon page – https://www.amazon.co.uk/e/B0034PZG70

The Evesham Cafe Collection

Special offer – December only! The book is priced at £8.99. However – buy via my website and I will gift-wrap it and post it for you at no additional cost.


For those who don’t know – this stands for National Novel Writing Month. There is a website you can register with that allows you to upload a daily word count (if you want to) and link with other writers who are also undertaking the challenge – again this is not compulsory.

The challenge is to write 50,000 words of a novel during the thirty days of November. However, feel free to use this creatively in any way that helps you. If you prefer to write short stories then think about creating a collection. You could also write a non fiction book or complete several unfinished projects. The only stipulation is that you can’t import words from elsewhere on your computer.

Have fun with it. Please get in touch and let me know what you’re working on. Also look out for special offers on my critique service early next year.


Halloween is one of my favourite times of year. It brings back a lot of childhood memories – the parties when we did apple bobbing, played truth or dare and told stories. It also felt magical and fairytale-ish with white mist rising from the fields near the river and cobwebs festooning the bushes.

Since I’ve been writing full time, it’s been a time when I re-evaluate what has happened earlier in the year. It’s a time to begin new projects (NaNoWriMo is brilliant for this!) and to complete any unfinished ones.

I hope it is a magical time for you this year. Please get in touch and tell me what you’re working on. Look out for a special offer on my critique service early in the New Year.

My Year of Living Magically Begins!

I’ve had my ‘Year of Living Dangerously’ which involved lots of published work, a collaboration with an artist, co-writing with a historical fiction writer (more news about that project in due course) and ending with a link up with a quilt-maker. (Again, more news soon).

My workshops at Number 8, Pershore, are now in their fifteenth year and are going from strength to strength. I am also having great fun at The Suffolk Anthology, Cheltenham and Tesco Community Room, St Oswald’s Road, Gloucester running workshops with Joy Thomas.

My Year of Living Magically will involve completing a play about 17th century witchcraft and a quartet of Regency novels.

I also have a long list of places I’m looking forward to visiting.

Watch this space!

Poetry in Colour – 2nd – 30th September – Evesham Library

Painting by Lindsay Tether

The exhibition featured artwork by Lindsay Tether and poetry by Sue Johnson and was part of the 2019 Evesham Festival of Words. Sue wrote poems in response to Lindsay’s paintings and Lindsay created artwork in response to Sue’s poems. Each item in the exhibition tells a story. They are all linked in some way.

The exhibition and workshop on Monday 16th September was a sell out.

Many thanks to everyone who attended the workshop and/or viewed the exhibition and left us such lovely comments.

The Glass Prison

I’m very happy that my historical story ‘The Glass Prison’ is published in the new issue of ‘Woman’s Weekly Fiction Series.’ Venice is one of my passions and getting this story published has been an exercise in persistence.

If you’ve written a story that you feel passionate about, then stick with it however long it takes. It will get there.

P S Since the publication of this story, two further stories that other editors didn’t like have been published. They could so easily have stayed in the computer file they were skulking in! #amwriting

Money in the bank

Buy yourself a notebook (if you don’t already carry one). Use it to jot down ideas for stories, brief descriptions of people and places and fragments of overheard conversation.

Use the information to create short, experimental pieces. Aim to finish one every day. Aim for 100 words. (This can be developed and expanded into a longer story).

Treat the stories and information you gather like money in the bank or a harvest of fruit or vegetables.

Threads – spinning the web of time

Almost exactly a year ago I went into a shop called Quilters Corner, opposite the library in Evesham, Worcestershire. It was a wet Saturday in March 2018. I was attracted by a beautiful quilt hanging in the window. It was log cabin pattern, using a variety of dark green, rust and cream fabrics. As a former patchwork addict, it was like a magnet. However, more surprises were to come! Inside the shop I came face to face with a black and gold Naumann sewing machine similar to the one owned by my Great Grandmother and passed on to my mother on her marriage to my father. It was the machine I learned to sew on – with varying degrees of success!

I stood gazing at the machine as time span backwards, did a loop the loop and left my brain spinning. I left the shop, went to the nearest café and sat writing a torrent of ideas. A year later, the result is this book. So far, this book has exceeded any expectations I had. The book signing in Quilters Corner (held on a wet Thursday in early April) was an amazing event (photo of me with Charlie Gannon, owner of Quilters Corner). The book is selling well – I have a small following in Germany – and appears to be leading to other projects I would never have thought of doing. I am also researching another novel set in Liverpool and Belfast.

Several people told me not to bother with this project. I am so glad I disregarded their advice and just did it. 

The book is continuing to do sell well on Amazon and via my website www.writers-toolkit.co.uk

I’m developing some of the ideas as short stories. Never waste a good idea by only using it once!