That scary moment…

…when you give your manuscript to others to read. Eek! It feels something akin to going out in public with no clothes on. It’s a terrifying prospect but a necessary step towards the ultimate goal. (Thankfully, no nakedness actually required.)

After a sporadic December, January turned out to be a productive month and I completed the eleventh draft of the first book in my historical fiction series less than half way into February. Yes, draft number eleven. I first put pen to paper (luminous orange ink in a Buffy the Vampire Slayer notebook) on this story back in distant 2002 and Continue reading

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A fleeting focus on facts and figures (with fireworks)

Usually, when January comes, WordPress delivers a Year in Review report with statistics about the views, posts, comments, etc., on your blog over the past year. They throw in some fireworks too which is always a cheerful sight (here’s the 2015 report for illustration). Unfortunately, their resources didn’t allow for such a service this year which meant I was obliged to go digging for the details myself.  Most of it turned out to be available in the admin section of the site so here are a few points I’ve put together!

In 2016, my website accumulated: Continue reading

“Ireland Is…”

I’m delighted to share a wonderful video of a poem entitled “Ireland Is…” with you today.  It is a collaborative effort by members of a Facebook group called Oh My God What A Complete Aisling (OMGWACA) and is about how important home is to us all. The lines of the poem were recorded by over eighty members, collated by Aidan Strangeman and edited together by Bob Murphy (my husband!). At times hilarious, unforgiving, nostalgic and moving, it will resonate with people both at home and abroad.

The video has been produced to help raise funds for Continue reading

2016: Time to take stock

Another year has passed which means it’s time to look back over 2016 and assess how it went!

December 2016On a global scale, I think many people are in agreement that the year has been something of a disaster, with regard to both international politics and the loss of numerous celebrity greats. On a personal level, I’ve found it to be a year of bad luck in quite a few different aspects, although there were memorable moments too, including special weddings of very close friends. But, for the purposes of this blog, the question is how did I fare out in writing terms?

My final post of 2015 included these words: “2016 will see Continue reading

The Power of Music

I am a piano teacher by day and a writer by every-other-chance-I-can-get, so today I’d like to combine the two and write about music. Specifically, about the powerful impact music can have.

Everyone has experienced it. You hear a tune and it transports you to another place, or brings you back to your childhood, or reminds you of a special person in your life, or instils a strong emotion. Sometimes it’s not possible to Continue reading

I exited this series four books early…

…which some might say doesn’t necessarily entitle me to write a review of it. After all, I didn’t give it a chance in its entirety. Still, even though the series is composed of eight volumes, the individual books  can be read as standalone stories so I think I have licence to offer commentary on the ones I got through and on my experience of the first 50% of the series before I made my escape.

I’d just like to emphasise that this is not a totally negative review, but neither is it overloaded with praise. Keeping the balance between like and dislike proved tricky to navigate!

So what prompted this mixed reaction? Back at the beginning of the summer, I chose to embark upon Continue reading

Oh, how I regret my pantser days…

Hi, my name is Susie and I’m a recovering pantser. It’s been three and a half years since my last transgression.

And I’m still paying for it…

When I first began to think seriously about trying to get published, I started reading blogs dedicated to the craft of writing. I soon found that one topic writers often like to talk about is that of the PLOTTER versus the PANTSER. If you type those terms into your search bar, you will get tons of articles on the subject.

So what’s it all about? A plotter is someone who Continue reading