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Collated Answers from WW interviews

Tell us all about your writing background- what you’ve written, what you’re currently writing
Beanie BabyI can't remember a time that I wasn't creating stories and I began to write them down when I was seven or so. My first 'book' was called The Little Actress and I reckon it ran to around 2000 words, which is a lot when you are only seven! I drew the front cover and bound it up and proudly showed it off to everyone. As I grew up, I tried everything including Mills and Boon, writing stand-up comedy, novels, full length plays and musicals. I seem to have settled down now to poetry and children's books and I am currenly drafting the third in the Yucketypoo series for Lollypop.

I ran Creative Writing courses for adults for a few years and I thoroughly enjoyed that. I have also run Creative Writing workshops for children and I would love to do some more because I found them hugely satisfying. I took a proof reading course a couple of years back and got a diploma which was great and eventually, I'd like to put it to better use and maybe earn some money from it. At the moment I do have a day job as a PA,which does get in the way of the writing a lot, but I am just stuck with it for now.
Cally TaylorIt’s almost a cliché to say, “I started writing when I was a child” but it’s true. I wrote my first ‘book’ when I was eight, drew illustrations on the back of each page, bound it with wool and sent it off to Penguin Publishers. It was to me returned some months later with a very sweet rejection letter attached.

I wrote truly awful poetry in my teens (most of which I destroyed years ago) and started writing short stories in my early twenties. I thought they were quite good until I joined a very frank online writing group (not WriteWords) in 2005 and learned that they weren’t. I got serious about short story writing then – writing nearly every day and subbing to every literary market out there. I had some success but felt like a square peg in a round hole. My style – light-hearted, light on description and...I can’t think of another light word... – didn’t really suit literary fiction. It was only when I was awarded the runner-up prize in a short story competition run by Woman’s Own magazine that I realised I was a commercial writer and that’s what I did best. I started writing stories specifically for women’s magazines and, after a while, they started to get accepted and published.

In 2006 one of my best friends from school died suddenly and I re-evaluated my life. I’d always been a procrastinator and high on the list of ‘things I’ll do one day’ was write a novel. My friend’s death taught me that ‘one day’ doesn’t always comes so, in early 2007, I sat down to write a supernatural romantic-comedy about a woman called Lucy who dies the night before her wedding, refuses to go to heaven and decides to try and become a ghost instead. I wrote nearly every day and finished what was to become “Heaven Can Wait” in three months and three weeks. (Editing it took a lot longer!)

“Heaven Can Wait” was published by Orion Paperback on 15 October 2009 and I’m currently editing my second, untitled, novel which will be published in September 2010. Like my first novel it’s another supernatural romantic-comedy, but this one isn’t about ghosts.
Claire MossNorthern Soul Revival is not just the first novel I've had published, it's the first novel I've written. Before I started writing it I had written a tiny (and I do mean tiny) bit of another book I vaguely thought I might write – a thriller – but once NSR came into my head, I never gave the other book another thought. I wrote a lot as a child, but in adult life NSR was the first time I'd seriously tried to write anything fictional.
Deborah SwiftI’m currently working on my second historical novel. The first one, “The Lady’s Slipper” will be published by Macmillan New Writing next year. I have just finished the edits and seen its sumptuous cover design, so I actually believe it is going to happen now! It is a historical novel set in 1660 in rural Westmorland, and is a story of love, loyalty, murder and revenge – and a little wild flower called the lady’s slipper.
I also write poetry and my work has appeared in poetry magazines, most recently in Envoi and Anon. You can hear me reading one of my poems live on http://www.litfest.org
Elizabeth SpellerI’ve written history, travel, a memoir, poetry and fiction. They’re all really about re-creating times or places. I finished my latest book two weeks ago and am missing it.

Helen BlackI’m a crime writer and my first novel, Damaged Goods, was published in January by HarperCollins. It’s the story of a girl in care who is accused of murdering her Mother and her lawyer’s journey to help her. I deal with drugs, prostitution and paedophilia so it’s not for the faint hearted.
I recently submitted my second novel, A Place of Safety, to my editors. I was flippin’ relieved to learn they love it. I’ve just received the structural edits and have three weeks to get them done. Ahhhhhhhh.

I’m a lawyer by trade and specialise in representing children, though I’m currently on a break, darling.
Since my main character, Lilly Valentine, is a lawyer who wallows in the murky waters of the care system, I’d say the day job has been indispensable. The stories and characters are all there just waiting to spill out onto the page.
Helen McWilliamsI’ve been writing in an amateur capacity for more years than I can remember, always with a particular interest in writing for radio or television as well as dashing off short stories and poems. I was fortunate enough to be mentored in poetry by a lady called Jacqui Rowe who is a published poet among other things. She ran a series of courses at the MAC Arts Centre in Birmingham and attending those helped to boost my confidence in sharing my fictional work.

I have my own theatre and event review blogsite www.breakalegreviewblog.wordpress.com which I’m pleased to say is going from strength to strength. I also write for www.the-newshub.com, I write articles for them on whatever subject takes my fancy, which is extremely liberating.
At the moment I’m working on an entry for the Ruth Rendell Short Story Competition, a number of poems for the flash poetry group I’m a member of at ‘Write Words’, and three more articles for ‘The News Hub’. In addition I am always writing monologues/duologues when an idea for them springs to mind, I’m in the process of turning a few of those into possible scripts for radio.
Jane ElmorMy Vintage Summer has just this month been published by Pan Macmillan, about adolescent girls, their friendships, a wild older sister who leads them astray, a girl band in the 1980s music scene, a woman married to a music biz guy who meets a young singer/songwriter and falls... It's my first novel so I'm still grinning like an idiot when I see it in the shops or get a good review. I've just (this minute, actually!) submitted my second, due for publication in 2009, about artists struggling with conflicting drives, creativity and failure, love and biology. There is, of course, a fabulous affair.
Jill DawsonI’ve just finished my fifth novel, Watch Me Disappear. It’s about a ten-year-old girl who goes missing in the Cambridgeshire Fens in the 70s. Thirty years later, returning to the same village, her best friend Tina Humber tries to reconstruct what happened. Tina thinks she’s come as close to knowing as is humanly possible. But so much remains impossible to verify – simply an adult re-writing of a child’s understanding.

I live very close to Soham and although it’s not about the Soham murders, the novel was prompted because the children in our village were all very upset about Holly and Jessica and had to contend with a surfeit of memorial services and media intrusion. I wanted to write about children struggling to make sense of such things as rape and murder when they can barely yet make sense of sex.

At the moment I’m writing screenplays. I’m adapting Watch Me Disappear for film and working on an original screenplay – a period drama - with another producer. And my fourth novel, Wild Boy is being adapted for film by the novelist Caryl Phillips, which is a project I’m going to be co-producing.
I’ve done every kind of writing: journalism, poetry, short stories, novels, screenplays, and non-fiction. That’s because writing has been how I’ve earned my living for twenty years. I’ve edited five anthologies, I’ve taught Creative Writing in various settings from adult education to residential courses, to MA’s in writing, culminating in the MA at UEA. But I’m finally taking a break from it and have to admit it’s a joy not to be thinking about other people’s writing and only concentrating on mine, for a change!
Jill McGiveringI’ve just published my first novel, THE LAST KESTREL which is set in Helmand Province, Afghanistan. It’s a fast-paced story set in the middle of the current conflict. The events are seen through the eyes of two main characters, a British female correspondent who’s embedded with British troops and an Afghan female villager who’s a wife and mother.

I’m now close to finishing my second novel which is set in North West Pakistan. This too has a strong and dramatic plot. It looks at the impact on a local family of the Taliban and their fight against government forces. The family is forced to flee their village and take refuge in an aid camp – where they find new dangers, challenges and mysteries.

I’ve previously written short stories (one was selected in a national competition for broadcast on Radio Four) and stage plays.

I’m a journalist by profession. For the last eighteen years, I’ve been a BBC journalist including a foreign correspondent based in Hongkong, India, Washington – so much of my work writing has been for radio and television, usually to tight deadlines. I’ve always written fiction in my own time – but the journalism work has been a great discipline, forcing me to write to order and to be more concise and clear.

John RitchieI have written on and off since I was around five years old and even managed to make a career out of it for a while when I became the Technical Author for Emirates Airlines I.T. department in Dubai, where I spent twelve years writing computer user manuals.

My wife, who I met in Dubai, was the Editor of a popular life-style magazine there and in return for writing the first drafts of restaurant reviews and travel articles I got to accompany her to hotels and restaurants all over the Middle and Far East.

I also wrote fiction in my spare time, as a member of a local Writers Group, and was placed twelfth out of twenty-five in a United Arab Emirates-wide literary competition.

I currently have over 370 pieces of work in my WriteWords archive and lots of other bits scattered around the place, such as a Doorknobs and BodyPaint Anthology, the Heavy Glow Anthology, an Every Day Fiction Anthology, MicroHorror, Bewildering Stories, Duck and Herring, Mytholog, etc.

I am presently pretending to write a novel, but fooling no one, including myself.

One of my earliest memories, circa five years old, is having the writing desk, paper and pens I had asked for, for Christmas, and then saying ‘What shall I write?’ I knew I wanted to, I just didn’t know how.

I learned to read at an early age, and read widely and indiscriminately, before trying to emulate what I had been reading in my own writing. Each subsequent reading discovery setting me off another hopeless Quixotic quest, culminating in an Open University degree in English Literature and some new writers to admire and attempt to copy.
Julia CopusI’m a poet, but I occasionally write for radio too – for the afternoon play slot on Radio 4. I’m working on my third poetry collection at the moment – or third and a half if you include a pamphlet I published back in 1994. The provisional title of my new book is ‘Twenty Three Skidoo’, an American idiom meaning ‘Let’s get out of here’. I’ve also just finished a pocket writing guide for undergraduates, which is due out from Macmillan in September 2009.

Kate TymMy writing career came through an editing background. I started my professional life as an editorial assistant at Random House children’s books (making lots of cups of tea and doing lots of photocopying). After about six years there I had risen to the heady heights of Commissioning Editor (having the odd cup of tea made for me and not doing nearly so much photocopying). I found though that I was becoming somewhat frustrated by editing some things that I felt I probably could have written better myself in the first place. The opportunity to write arose when I was commissioning a series of fairly mass-market fiction for teenage girls – I did some sample chapters, had them approved by the publisher and wrote my first book. I was thrilled to pieces and loved every minute of doing it. Since then I’ve written right across the board for children – from pre-school board books to teenage fiction. I also done a bit of non-fiction and had one adult novel published – chicky-litty! I now have moved away from writing for children and I’ve gone back to what is probably my first love – poetry. I write my own stuff for performing and (hopefully) publishing and I have a sideline in writing bespoke wedding/celebratory poetry for other people.
Laura WatsonI have written a couple of theatre plays (one of which had a rehearsed reading at Soho Theatre and the other was produced by Kings Theatre in Newmarket), an Afternoon Play for Radio 4, several episodes of EastEnders and an episode of Casualty. I also developed an original six part drama as part of the Lighthouse Screenwriting Programme in Brighton for which I wrote the pilot episode. I’m currently developing a single drama with an independent production company and I’ve just been awarded a Grant from the Arts Council to research and write a theatre play.
Lola JayeMy passion for writing started around eleven years old when I crafted a weekly series of stories written in the solitude of a top floor bedroom. They were called ‘Karen and Terry’ and explored the exciting adventures of two teenaged girls. Snogging, school and… snogging, I think. But it was after putting together a really long research thesis for my Masters Degree, many years later that I began to think; if I could write 20,000 words, surely I could write 80,000?

It was an interesting challenge I was determined to conquer. And I suppose because I did, I also believed finding a publisher within weeks of finishing that first novel was also quite realistic. How wrong was I?

Put it this way, almost eight years and three and a half novels later, here I am. It has finally happened. A publishing contract with Harper Collins. Although it took ages to get ‘here’, the book that was accepted, took six months to write and the ‘yes’ from an editor was almost overnight! Funny how these things can happen.

So, my newly published book is called By The Time You Read This… and centres on Kevin Bates, who with six months to live, decides he is going to write a manual for his daughter Lois - something she can live by, laugh at and follow right up until she is thirty years old. He begins it as follows:
‘This is my (Kevin Bates) manual for my daughter Lois. The love of my life.
Rules of the manual:
1. You must only read each new entry on your birthday
2. This is a private manual between you and me.
3. No peeping at the next entry unless it's your birthday!
When Lois Bates is handed the manual, she can barely bring herself to read it as the pain of her dad's death is still so raw. Yet soon Kevin's advice is guiding her through every stage of her life - from jobs to first loves and relationships. The manual can never be a substitute for having her dad back, but through his words Lois learns to start living again’.

The book has been out for three weeks so I am still in that excitable stage, having had a launch party and seen the book in bookshops and supermarkets. My heart leaps if I see anyone so much as glance at a copy but I have yet to see someone reading it on a train or something – now that’s something I would love to experience.

I am currently working on two books at the moment. One is the second of the two book deal with Harper Collins and the other a non fiction ‘Quick Read’ aimed at adults in the UK with reading difficulties and those who don’t usually read books. In between all that, there’s the day job and editing By The Time You Read This… for my American publisher! It’s a lot of work, but I will not complain. I have waited for these moments for a long, long time.
A L BerridgeWriting was in my family. My father was the historian David Newsome, who published six academic books with John Murray – one of which, ‘On the Edge of Paradise’, won the Whitbread Best Biography back in the late 1970s. He always pressed on us the importance of crafting a decent piece of prose, and continued to write a beautifully literary diary up until the day before he died.
He also taught us the joy of storytelling. I was one of a family of four girls, and whenever we were bored he always told us to ‘go and tell a story’. So we did, all four of us, belting up and down the sitting room while we each ignored the others and told our own story out loud. We all wrote little books, pressing copies of handwritten ‘Zulu Weekly’s on our rapidly diminishing number of schoolfriends. We were truly foul children.
I was about six when I wrote my first ‘book’, a really hideous attempt at an Enid Blyton mystery. My sisters still kindly remind me of the story, which finally exposed the greengrocer as the robber because he’d conveniently left a cabbage at the scene of the crime. I continued to write well into my teens, churning out appalling romances and mystery thrillers right up until I went to university and began to study great literature for real. I looked at what I was writing, thought ‘Ewwww,’ and put it aside for three decades.
I found other ways of telling stories, first as a teacher, then as a script editor and producer in television drama, and as long as I was getting them ‘out’ somehow I was satisfied. It’s only when I left television and had no other outlet that I was forced to try writing for myself. Even then I struggled with the unfamiliar format of a novel, and ‘Honour and the Sword’ went through four drafts before I submitted it.

It’s a historical epic set in 17th century France, about a young nobleman trained to the rigid code of honour but who loses his family in the 1636 invasion of Picardy and is forced to live among ordinary peasants in order to survive. In the process he learns something about real humanity, while the peasants learn his concept of honour, and together they band together to do the unthinkable and fight back.
It’s published by Penguin under the Michael Joseph imprint and comes out in April 2010. I’ve just finished the second book, but we’re planning a whole series about André, Chevalier de Roland, and how this curious honour/humanity hybrid will survive in the reality of a politically riven and war-torn 17th century France.
Lucy McCarraherMy first novel, “Blood and Water” has just been published by Macmillan New Writing. The press release calls it “Bridget Jones for the Over 40s”, and “hen-lit” rather than “chick-lit”, because it’s about the complicated life of a middle-aged woman with grown up as well as young children, a second husband, extended family, a group of girlfriends and career she wants to progress. When her husband’s sister asks her to help trace their birth mother – against his wishes – all their lives are thrown into chaos and tracking down the mysterious Caitlin reveals secrets in all their lives.

The title, “Blood and Water” refers to the saying “blood is thicker than water”. But the wide variety of family relationships around these days make that a very questionable statement.

Currently I’m working on a second novel, “Kindred Spirits”, which takes the same main characters into a new situation. I’ve also got two time schemes running in this one, the present and a story from the 1940s which takes place in the same house, and the two eventually come together to resolve the issues in both strands of the plot. I’ve written seven of the nine planned chapters and hope to finish it in the next few weeks.

I have also written a self-help book called “The Book of Balanced Living” with Lucy Daniels, which was published about four years ago, as my day job for the past ten years or so has been as an expert in Work-Life Balance.

Everything I’ve ever done has been a writing job of sorts. I started out as a journalist, living in Sydney when I finished my English/Drama degree. My husband and I started up a monthly national performing arts magazine called “Theatre Australia”, and I was a freelance for other newspapers and journals as well. When we came back to London I did some freelance editing for Methuen Drama, worked for a writers’ agent, Harriet Cruickshank, and then became Head of Development at a television production company called Lifetime. This meant I wrote proposals for televising novels, dreamed up dramas and factual series and ended up writing lots of scripts, including for a children’s TV series called “Runaway Bay” (starring Naomie Harris, currently starring in “Pirates of the Caribbean 2”). In between I also worked as a script-editor, publishing editor and ghost writer.

Even in the area of Work-Life Balance, while I’ve been consulting to organisations, researching for academics and voluntary organisations, the work has all involved writing - reports, presentations, workshops and so on.
Mark Liam PiggottMy first novel, “Fire Horses”, is published by Legend Press on 31st May. I’ve had major features in most of the nationals – Guardian, Independent, Telegraph etc. Plus short stories in Aesthetica Magazine, a Pulp anthology, and online at literary sites.

To pay the rent I write websites and brochures for various organisations but god I hate it... Still, at least I don’t have to use up my ideas.

Neil ForsythMy first book was called Other People’s Money – The Rise and Fall of Britain’s Most Audacious Fraudster and came out in April 2007. It’s the true story of former credit card fraudster Elliot Castro, was serialised in the Guardian and we’ve just agreed a deal for the film rights. My new book is out October 4th and is called Delete This At Your Peril. It’s a collection of emails I exchanged with Internet spammers in the character of a 62-year-old, heavy-drinking, former window cleaner from Dundee. Hopefully it’s funnier than it sounds there. I’m currently writing a novel.
Nicky SingerI’ve written four novels for adults, two books of non-fiction, four novels for young people and have just finished a so-called ‘cross-over’ book. My first book for children Feather Boy won the Blue Peter Book of the Year Award plus a BAFTA for Best Drama when it was filmed for the BBC. It was also commisioned as a musical by the National Theatre and I worked on the book (ie script…) with producer Peter Tabern, composer Debbie Wiseman and lyricist, Don Black. I’m currently writing a libretto for Glyndebourne based on my latest book The Knight Crew – a re-telling of the Arthur legend set in contemporary gangland. World premiere – March 2010.

How, when and why did you first start writing?

I am the oldest girl in a family of five (one boy, then four girls) and I started storytelling to my younger sisters after my father died (when I was 14 and the youngest child 8 months). I developed a different set of characters for each sister (loosely based on their personalities….) and told them each a story based on these characters while my over-worked mother tidied up after supper each night. I think of my writing starting there and with chocolate – see below.
Peter HobbsI’m a novelist and short story writer (though I tend to move from one form to the other, rather than doing both at the same time). I’ve published a novel, The Short Day Dying, and a collection of short stories, very different in style, called I Could Ride All Day in My Cool Blue Train. I’m just finishing (at least, this is what I tell my editor) my second novel.
Rebecca ConnellI’m one of those clichéd authors who have been writing since childhood, but I doubt that much of my earlier output will ever see the light of day! – largely because most of it revolved around talking cats. I have always tended to err towards novels rather than short stories – I think naturally in terms of longer narratives – and as a result I have dozens of abandoned, half-written novels stacked up in notebooks at my parents’ house. In my teens I loved writing murder mysteries; as I’ve got older I have veered away from that path, but I like to think that my first published novel, THE ART OF LOSING, still has elements of crime and mystery within it, although it’s categorised as more general literary fiction. I’ve recently finished the first draft of my next novel, provisionally titled TOLD IN SILENCE, and am gearing up to edit that into shape.
Rosy BarnesI have written plays, a radio play, reviews, theatre criticism and other arts journalism. My creative writing (for want of a better word) is comedic. My other stuff can be very po-faced and serious. So I’m a bit of a split personality.

My comedy novel, Sadomasochism for Accountants is being published by Marion Boyars Publishers and going on sale in bookshops in February (although I think it is in some Waterstones branches now, much to my general “eekness” and “arghness”.)

It's about an overlooked woman working in an accountancy firm who joins a fetish club to learn to be more exciting, a bunch of colourful club goers and a load of dastardly accountants...it all makes sense when you read it. Promise.

I've been a longstanding member of the site, so I feel that WW has been with me (so to speak) all the way.
Sally ZigmondIt seems strange to me now that although I’ve loved reading and writing from an early age and studied English Literature at University, it never occurred to me to write until I enrolled in a local creative writing class about fifteen years ago. After that, there was no stopping me! I began by writing articles. These were mainly travel features for caravan magazines but I soon found writing non-fiction too restrictive because I had to stick to the facts and my imagination was itching to be let loose. Writing fiction more fun but a lot harder to place. After a lot of trial and error, failure and rejection, I learned to master the differing requirements of both commercial and literary fiction and for a while I was quite successful in short story competitions. Writing for competitions is a great discipline; they teach you to work to a strict deadline and also to exercise one’s imagination by aiming to be different from every other entrant.

One of the first people to encourage me was Jo Derrick (then Jo Good) when she ran QWF magazine. She encouraged and supported me and we’re now great friends. I also met many other writers through QWF and learned a lot, especially when I helped Jo out for a while by reading all submissions. Again, it was hard work but very rewarding and it taught me a lot about short story writing by seeing what worked and what didn’t and why.

I was fortunate enough, one year, to win first prize in the annual Biscuit Short Story competition. As well as a generous cash prize, I was given the chance to write either a collection of short stories or a 40,000 word novella. As I had never written anything longer than 5,000 words before, I felt I was ready to take on the challenge of something longer and more complex. The result was Chasing Angels, a novella about the real-life, Henriette d’Angeville, French aristocrat and mountaineering pioneer who climbed Mont Blanc in 1838. It was published in 2007.

All this time, I had been writing an historical novel. In fact, I wrote two. The road to publication proved long and frustrating journey involving much rejection and several major rewrites. Eventually, my determination paid off and Hope Against Hope will be published by Myrmidon Books in June 2009.

I am now currently rewriting my second novel. As a light-weight saga, it failed to find publication so I am now revamping it and improving it for a different market and hope it will be successful next time around.
ShikaI've written poems since I was very little and about ten years ago I decided to write a novel. That novel has morphed into two short stories, one poem and two novels based on the original idea which I have decided to leave to breathe for a while. This has opened up the space for something completely different and I am working on a contemporary thriller that I hope will force me to flex my plotting muscle.

Tara HylandMy debut novel is called Daughters of Fortune, and it’s out in the UK & Commonwealth on 18 March this year. It’s a blockbuster / family saga, about three heiresses to an English fashion house. I’ve just finished a first draft of my second book – tentatively titled An Untold Scandal, but I imagine that will change – and I’ve sent that off to my agent and editors for them to read. But my very first taste of being published was back in 1989 (I was 13!), when I was a winner in the WHSmith Young Writer of the Year Award, for a short story on reincarnation and vengeful ghosts. I received a cheque for £40 and the story was published in an anthology with thirty other winners. I think after that I really wanted to be a writer, but it took ten years of working in finance before I got here.
Tim LottI’ve written six books in all. My first, in 1996, ‘The Scent of Dried Roses’ was a family memoir. My first adult novel, ‘White City Blue’ came out in 1999 and won the Whitbread First Novel prize. Since then I have written two other novels for adults. Fearless is my first novel for Young Adults. My next two books are likely to be non fiction.

I can’t really do anything else, although I do teach at the Arvon Foundation once or twice a year.
Tony McGowanI wrote my first book, Hellbent, while I was working for the Civil Service back in the 1990s. The work was both hard and boring, and writing was my release, my joy, my hope. After Hellbent I wrote two literary thrillers, Stag Hunt and Mortal Coil for Hodder & Stoughton, and then two more teenage books for Random House. I’ve also written a clutch of books for younger children. My latest book is called Einstein’s Underpants, a sort opf sci-fi comedy thing aimed at 10-13 year olds. It comes out on April 1. I’ve just finished the first draft of another Y/A novel, provisionally titled Death Be Not Proud. It’s a High School noir thriller.

Before working for the Civil Service I’d spent a long time at University, culminating in a rather fey PhD on the history of beauty. A PhD is, basically, a book, and writing it both taught me the craft of stringing sentences together, and reassured me that I could, in fact, produce a book-sized object.

Trilby KentMy first novel for children, Medina Hill, was published by Tundra Books in Canada and the U.S. in 2009; my second, Stones For My Father, will be released next year. My first novel for adults, Smoke Portrait, has just been accepted for publication by Alma Books here in the UK; at the moment we’re looking at a Spring 2011 release. I’ve also worked as a freelance journalist, writing film, book and exhibition reviews, feature articles, investigative reports and essays for the Canadian national press as well as for magazines and journals in the U.S. and Europe. I’ve had a few short stories published. I’m currently working on a Creative Writing PhD, for which I have to write a novel and an accompanying thesis. I’ve just finished my first year and I’m about 30,000 words into the novel.
Zoe WilliamsThis morning, I wrote something about David Beckham. I covered 1500 words on the first time I read that his left foot defied the laws of physics, and then a sub-editor got back to me and said, apparently, it was his right foot. I was all for just doing a find’n’replace from left to right, but that seemed too cheeky, so I had to sit on it for four hours to pretend I was thinking, and then do a find’n’replace.
In a minute, I’m gonna start a column on the pro-choice meeting that’s happening in the House of Lords in a couple of days’ time. To be honest, I don’t think the right to abortion is under any threat in this country, but I do think there are some nasty minded trends occurring in popular culture (mealy-mouthed inferences that it’s immoral), and I’m keen to defend the pro-choice position, even if it does make me sound incredibly dated and Eighties.