Writing in exile

In my interview published today on The Displaced Nation, author Harriet Springbett talks about being an English writer living in France: ‘When I go back to England and see bookshops stuffed with books, or blogs featuring new books every day, I feel intimidated. Writing stories suddenly seems rather pointless and I wonder what I can…

1,000 years back and 1,000 years forward

Some readers of my posts may feel confused by the polarised nature of my activities: on the one hand writing early medieval fiction and the other hand writing future fiction about exoplanets and other life poetics. I get quite confused by this paradox myself! However, the medieval historian Henry of Huntingdon, writing in the 12th…

Simon Mawer interview

My interview with acclaimed novelist Simon Mawer was recently published on The Displaced Nation site. Mawer’s fiction has received a slew of prizes: The McKitterick Prize for his first novel, Chimera; The Glass Room was short-listed for the Booker Prize; and Tightrope won the Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction. He has lived in Italy…

Simon Mawer, Hieronymus Bosch, Pieter Bruegel the Elder

I’ve recently published two articles. An interview with Booker short-listed novelist, Simon Mawer, is published in my regular column for The Displaced Nation. His novel, Tightrope, set in 1950s London, won the Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction. Mawer had a peripatetic upbringing and now lives in Italy. He says that not feeling at home…

Good questions on the writing process

I am currently on a Blog Tour for my new novel, Conquest: Daughter of the Last King and have been tackling some very good questions from bloggers about researching, writing and publishing processes, as well questions about the novel itself. See some of my answers here: Trip Fiction, 16 October 2016 The Cosy Reader, 10…

The Write Stuff in France

An article on English writers living in France, featuring an interview with me, has just been published in the August issue of Living France magazine. It includes information on writers groups, the Writing at the Castle writing workshops, literary festivals in France including Parisot and Charroux, and The English Library in Villefranche-de-Rouergue.

Where I Write

A short article on my writing process and places has just been published by Impress Books on their Blog ‘Where I Write’. In her delightful book, Three Rivers of France, Freda White wrote about Saint Cirq Lapopie, where I am currently writer in residence: ‘The village clambers up an escarpment so steep that the door…

Sentences on Water Affinity

I see water, any water, this water, I want to get in it, to rejoin it. Sentences on our affinity with water anyone? I’m about to begin a writing residency on the sinuous Lot river in France and was looking at this image of water from my previous post – Summer Writing Weeks in France….

Summer Writing Weeks in France

I will be teaching on residential writing weeks in south-west France in June and July run by ‘A Chapter Away’ at the fabulous Miradoux House. Please do forward information to anyone you know who might be interested to attend. I am leading the July course on historical fiction: Playing with Time: Writing Historical Fiction 6…