National Numpty

Not last Thursday but the Thursday before, the first day of this month, at some point in the late afternoon I remembered it was National Novel Writing Month. I once tried to write a novel, but gave up on the fourth draft when I realised it was pants. Since then I have focussed my efforts […]

Libraries Week

Being scolded for gasping with joy at the sight of so many books rather put me off libraries as a child, which may well have been the old bat’s intention. It seemed she believed the edifying power of books teetered on the brink of weaponisation, and it was her job to ensure they didn’t get […]

Capitalisation

Tomorrow we leave for London*, where we will house-sit for three and a half weeks. Which feels like a gift from the gods, and I hope to use it wisely, thus, as well as the usual clothes, camera, and bathroom paraphernalia, I’ve packed these: and hope I haven’t missed anything crucial. My plan being to […]

Honeymoon Travels: Communing with the Ancients

The next day (which was Thursday June 7) D. asked me what I’d like to do. I never know what I want to do, I’m generally content to carry on doing whatever I currently am, but I managed to remember I had thought I’d like to see the standing stones at Callanish when we booked […]

News from Wigtown: A Gathering

Now in its fourth year, the Writers’ Gathering is an inspiring day of events aimed at writers in Dumfries & Galloway and beyond. Taking place on Saturday 19 May 2018 in Wigtown, it will be led by some of the liveliest figures in Scotland’s literary scene. This year’s keynote talk will be given by Lynsey Rogers of Scottish Book […]

Shock of the New

We’ve had a rather dramatic few weeks, involving all this but not in as orderly a fashion. I’ll let you fill in the gaps left/created by the pictures* as I have a zillion emails to deal with, and several more boxes of books to file… The Mr. looks adoringly at his new grandson.     […]

On Writing

One of my favourite things in the whole world is Bookworm, a radio show hosted by the disarmingly deep reader Michael Silverblatt. I listen to it to learn about writing, and luxuriate in the conversation about what makes writing worth reading (something I’d rather like to be able to do). Here is Zadie Smith talking […]

Writing Beyond the Sonnet (& Other Conventional Constraints)

I don’t have the resources (temporal, cognitive…) to write a post at the moment; things seem to have become hectic. But I’ve just listened to a Bookworm episode featuring some members from OULIPO and think it worth sharing. You can listen as you get on with other things, or while taking a tea break, whatever […]

On the Line

A day late with this, apologies, but here is the last post’s disarranged/rearranged poem as it was written: Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow, Creeps in this petty pace from day to day, To the last syllable of recorded time; And all our yesterdays have lighted fools The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle! […]