Why Symbolism is Beautiful (And Why You Should Be Using It)

Way back at the beginning of term (I'm in the Transnational Creative Writing Masters Programme at Stockholm University) we had an awesome workshop from Cassie Gonzales. She was talking about character needs and goals, as well as symbolism. Now, symbolism isn't something I'd really thought about putting into my writing before this point. Not intentionally, anyway.…Read more Why Symbolism is Beautiful (And Why You Should Be Using It)

The Anti-Climax of Finishing Your First Draft

Last week I finished my novel. I know, right? Cue the champagne, let's start calling agents and– No. Not even close. You see, finishing a first draft isn't the same as finishing a novel. Finishing a first draft means you've taken all the bumf in your head about said book and you've put it down…Read more The Anti-Climax of Finishing Your First Draft

The Terror of Submitting Your First Piece of Fiction

I did something truly insane today. I submitted a piece of work to The New Yorker. It was a piece I've been working on for about two months now, a short story that follows a young girl in the run-up to a natural disaster. I went through about six edits to get to the final…Read more The Terror of Submitting Your First Piece of Fiction

The 10,000 Word Itch (or What To Do When You Come Up With A New Book Idea Whilst Writing A Different Book)

You're in a relationship. You've been together three months. You're starting to get to know each other, you've had quite a few dates - and things are starting to go really well. And then, BAM. You meet someone else. They're just as attractive as your current partner, but they're exciting and new. You tell yourself not…Read more The 10,000 Word Itch (or What To Do When You Come Up With A New Book Idea Whilst Writing A Different Book)