Posts by Year

2022

April 2022 Input

3 minute read

I can’t believe we are a third of the way through 2022. The tulips have bloomed and died back, warmer days are just around the corner. I haven’t done a lot o...

2022 March Input

2 minute read

March was another busy month as I adjusted to my new job and did lots of wedding admin. I also prepped and published a weird little game/ poetry pamphlet abo...

Construction

1 minute read

You imagined | a field transmuted | into endless red bricks. You | hammered a sign | into the soil and | walked away. Now we carve | out mud and sand | mix ...

2022 February Input

2 minute read

February has flown by on gales and storms. I’ve been really busy, performing two feature sets for Fen Speak and (Sm)art Festival, which were wonderful. I als...

2022 January Input

2 minute read

In the early days of this blog (5 years and almost 400 posts ago) I used to do monthly roundups. I’ve fallen out of the practice but have decided to revive i...

Books of 2021

4 minute read

Last year I got through 65 books. (I’ve kept a list here) Because I’m not really using GoodReads anymore, I thought I would curate a few of my highlights:

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2021

2021 in Review: Who knows anything anymore?

4 minute read

Yet again, I sit down to summarize the year gone by and yet again I find myself struggling for words. It has been another year of chaos and contradiction, of...

Communion

less than 1 minute read

Uncertain Art

3 minute read

I’ve been thinking about The Green Knight ever since I saw it a month ago. The film is a hypnotic blend of English myth, dream like strangeness and stiking i...

Cartography

3 minute read

I draw a square, to represent a former tobacco warehouse, converted by the council into offices, where I worked for a charity. On my desk, a spider plant st...

Upgraded

less than 1 minute read

Art as Play

3 minute read

I’ve spent a lot of this year consciously learning what was previously unconscious. I lost faith in my writing, so I took a lot of workshops and attempted to...

Free Fall

less than 1 minute read

Rustle

less than 1 minute read

It starts with a whisper, muttered half phrases and small slanders shaking leaves, pushing wind chimes into gentle collisions.

No Neutral Stories

4 minute read

There’s a certain section of the population who tend to get furious when a tv show or film casts anyone but straight white dudes. These people tend to be rig...

Thanks, Autocorrect

1 minute read

This was written in a slow single waltz before the next one

The Power of Interlinking

1 minute read

In a recent post, Austin Kleon writes about how other writers sort through their work:

Red Ink: Stuart Buck

8 minute read

This is a series where I interview poets about their process in regards to a single poem. Today we have the exceptional Stuart Buck, a brilliant poet, illust...

Never Finishing

2 minute read

I enjoyed Cory Doctorow writing about the lessons he has learned over twenty years of blogging. He describes how quickly the writing practise adds up and how...

Do we get political now?

less than 1 minute read

you ask me, sitting on the smashed roof tiles and concrete slabs that used to be our home. We are drinking rainwater and petrol from a puddle, drying our t-...

Unclear

less than 1 minute read

Generative

less than 1 minute read

we teach the AI how we scream feed it all our voices alone release all our agony our grief our childhood trauma ...

Red Ink: Elizabeth McGeown

9 minute read

This is a series where I interview poets about their process in regards to a single poem. Today we have the fantastic Elizabeth McGeown, who I have been luck...

Dawn Ritual

less than 1 minute read

I spin each morning from dream silk allow soft light to pour in a torrent from my ears out into the aether.

Pixels

less than 1 minute read

Red Ink: Ankh Spice

13 minute read

This is a series where I interview poets about their process in regards to a single poem. Today I am honoured to have the incredible Ankh Spice, whose poetry...

March 2021 Recommended

1 minute read

This is a bit late because of Easter. Spring is in the air, the tulips have taken over from the daffodils and freedom feels tantalisingly close.

Count Down to Infinity

1 minute read

I’m working front desk at the Hilbert Hotel. A queue of guests stretches to the horizon, each person sighing, waiting to check out. Some lea...

The Date

less than 1 minute read

After Kay Ryan

Clarity

less than 1 minute read

February 2021 Recommended

2 minute read

At the end of this month there was a burst of sunshine and the daffodils we buried in November erupted in their pots. This sudden explosion of sun and colour...

Writing Every Day

2 minute read

Some advice I hear repeated often is to write every single day. Like all advice, it’s a bit more complicated than it sounds. I think it is generally a good t...

Fuzz

less than 1 minute read

Sky Song

less than 1 minute read

No one could have predicted this

1 minute read

We’ve done everything we possibly can they proclaim on nightly broadcasts, shaking their fists for emphasis as if describing ineffective ancient magic runes ...

Red Ink: Liam Bates

4 minute read

This is a series where I interview poets about their process in regards to a single poem. Today I am honoured to have the fantastic Liam Bates, whose pamphle...

January 2021 Links

1 minute read

This January has been more miserable than most, grey and cold with a lockdown over us. It feels like a lifetime since further restrictions were announced. So...

A Breath

less than 1 minute read

Red Ink: Pascal Vine

6 minute read

This a series where I interview poets about their process and writing in reference to a single poem. Today we have Pascal Vine, an excellent poet, a captivat...

In bloom

less than 1 minute read

I cannot look away from the whorl of galaxies tucked into each curled petal, the supermassive black hole that sits on top of a stamen, dragging all...

Helix

less than 1 minute read

2020: A Playlist

3 minute read

I’m going to be featured in an upcoming anthology from Fevers of the Mind. The editor, David L O’Nan, asked for suggestions for a playlist of the music of 20...

Call it what it is

1 minute read

Due to the sickening events of yesterday in the USA, I found myself thinking back to when I was studying Weimar Germany in A level history. My main question ...

Gradual

less than 1 minute read

So Long 2020

3 minute read

Usually at the end of the year I write a little summary of what happened in the world at large. (2016, 2017, 2018, 2019.) This year I really struggled. How d...

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2020

Auld Lang Syne

13 minute read

We were meant to be children of the stars now, Richard thought to himself as he buttoned up his coat. Humans were meant to have escaped this lonely planet an...

Red Ink: Damien Donnelly

10 minute read

This a series where I interview poets about their process and writing in reference to a single poem. Today we have Damien Donnelly, who kindly invited me ont...

Circulation

2 minute read

We are unified euphoria, one organism joined together, twitching, harmonising, swaying.

Red Ink: Amanda Miller

10 minute read

This a new series where I interview poets about their process and writing in reference to a single poem. Today we have Amanda Miller, an amazing poet who sha...

Red Ink: Pauline Sewards

4 minute read

This a new series where I interview poets about their process and writing in reference to a single poem. Today we have Pauline Sewards, a fantastic poet I me...

Red Ink: Barry Hollow

3 minute read

This is the start of a new series where I interview poets about their process and writing in reference to a single poem. I’m delighted to start with Barry Ho...

Me Me Me

1 minute read

I’ve been lucky to get lots of stuff out in various places so this is a collection of links to my words elsewhere on the internets:

Six months from now

less than 1 minute read

this winter will be a distant memory but the cold will have set into our bones, the marrow deep in our femurs will have wires of frost running through it.

October 2020 Links

1 minute read

I’m moving house this month and I released a pamphlet, so it’s all been a bit frantic. Still, here are some things I’ve enjoyed engaging with this month.

Doodles

less than 1 minute read

Welcome to C-Mart

8 minute read

‘Welcome to C-Mart. I hope you have a wonderful visit. My name is Cindy. If you need any assistance, you can just call my name and I will do my best to help ...

Guest Blogs

1 minute read

This website’s domain is my name, it’s my face on the front and I type the words. It lives to promote my work and is essentially a a massive ego trip. But I ...

New micro pamphlet- Refraction

less than 1 minute read

In an effort to make something positive come out of this year, I have created a small pamphlet of poetry called Refraction. It features ten poems about swimm...

Supernova

less than 1 minute read

We have seen things

1 minute read

We have seen millions of years stacked upon another in sediment history etched into the stone, outlines and skeletons of creatures beyond imagination who us...

September 2020 Links

1 minute read

When I ported this site over and recoded it, I looked through old posts. In 2016 I made monthly link posts where I recommended things I enjoyed. Later, I mov...

Autumn

less than 1 minute read

Immerse

less than 1 minute read

Korembi

less than 1 minute read

The Garden

11 minute read

Surrounded by the long grass swaying in the breeze, the office seemed forever away. Helen could hear the gentle babbling of a stream somewhere nearby. Far up...

Beyond

less than 1 minute read

Rocket

less than 1 minute read

shot into

Squall

less than 1 minute read

Show and Tell

less than 1 minute read

Miss Morris asked us to bring something special in and talk about it in front of the class for everyone else to share and enjoy and so in this cardboard box ...

Half Life

less than 1 minute read

Missed Connection

less than 1 minute read

Were you the stranger dressed in electricity who floated above the tarmac without contact, who smiled in morse code, smelled of lavender and engine oil, who ...

Advert Break

12 minute read

The opening shot is a still lake, first thing in the morning. The sun has just started to beam down on the water. It is a mirror, reflecting the perfect blue...

Silhouettes

less than 1 minute read

Drunk dancers stumbling over earth, we expect to leave no trace behind.

Enclosed

less than 1 minute read

Into the Night

11 minute read

There was no sun. The news was full of theories about what had happened but there were no facts, just wild speculation. The government told people not to pan...

Recent Poetry Books I’ve Enjoyed

2 minute read

I’ve had lots of time to read poetry books, so here are a few I have enjoyed recently that I would recommend:

Off the Grid

less than 1 minute read

When the earth was correcting our cabled bodies were sprawled irreparable, most sensory inputs disconnected, transmissions down, smashed by careless hands wi...

Masks

less than 1 minute read

CW: Body harm

Ocarina

less than 1 minute read

Do you remember the first time you saw those mountains? How they towered above you? Do you remember your unbounded freedom, how paths lay before you, infinit...

Awakening

less than 1 minute read

Don’t climb up those ancient stone steps carved into the slope of our tallest mountain up to that egg that sits on the summit, the size of a temple. You don’...

Me Elsewhere

less than 1 minute read

Hello, here is where you can find me elsewhere on the internet:

Statues continued

less than 1 minute read

After yesterday’s post, I happened to be reading The People’s History of the United States by Howard Zinn. He writes about the reaction to the protests about...

Colston and the Myths of History

2 minute read

Every country is deluded in how they narrate the past. No history is complete and each history is a story shaped to make the narrators feel better. But I thi...

The Sky is Damaged

14 minute read

From her vantage point of the second highest branch, Cassie saw it first, growing over the horizon like a bruise. She often spent afternoons by herself in th...

Noise

less than 1 minute read

All change

2 minute read

You may notice my website looks a little different. I have moved it from Wordpress to Jekyll, teaching myself rudimentary HTML and CSS in the process. I chan...

Condolences

1 minute read

What good is this scattering over the grass, this gold and white confetti, these eyes opening at dawn and closing in the twilight? These are Freya’s flowers ...

Echoes and Edges Collaboration

less than 1 minute read

Echoes and edges were kind enough to set my poem How to hear the hills to an incredible deep soundtrack as part of their live stream collaboration. You can w...

The end of an era

less than 1 minute read

Taken from the review pages of Crack magazine, March 2020

FCIC10

5 minute read

PhaethonOfficial: We are here at the tenth Future of Computational Intelligence conference (#FCIC10). We sponsor a number of PhD students, excited to see the...

Some News

less than 1 minute read

I’m very grateful to have a poem up on Nine Muses Poetry called Imposter. It’s a strange little piece and I’m glad it’s found a good home. Check it out he...

Virtual workshop and a poem

less than 1 minute read

I joined a virtual poetry workshop yesterday run by the wonderful Tonic and wrote this: Fading

First crop of the year

less than 1 minute read

These radishes distilled the sun, turning it deep scarlet.

Upheaval

less than 1 minute read

Napowrimo 2020 Day 30- Burn

less than 1 minute read

I expect these days to fade like photographs left on a windowsill. That’s the hope. The numbers will blur, the weeks will drain of detail and colour...

Serenity Study zine

less than 1 minute read

I turned my poem from NaPoWriMo Day 27 into a little zine.

Napwriomo 2020 Day 29- Fragment

less than 1 minute read

Today my mind is like confetti thrown to the wind, like a website with every space filled with adverts, all flashing for my attention, like a river delta as ...

Napowrimo Day 28 - Guilt

less than 1 minute read

The sky is a confusion of clouds whereas just yesterday you could see the galaxy spin. We are out of coffee once again, the internet is often on the blink an...

Napowrimo 2020 Day 26- We Are Mostly Empty

1 minute read

As we tumbled through the void, everything was calm and peaceful if you ignored the constant drone of spycraft. The air was pink electric and crackled with p...

Napowrimo 2020 Day 25- Some Advice

1 minute read

I wouldn’t open that door if I were you. Last year I stored the Atlantic ocean behind it, stuffed it into every corner. I only just managed to close the latc...

Napowrimo Day 24 - Ripples

less than 1 minute read

“It’s been a while,” the water whispers as I enter, inch by inch, “but what’s a few million years between friends? I know why you abandoned me for land. I fo...

Napowrimo 2020 Day 23- Erasing

less than 1 minute read

“I know how this goes!” I say to no-one as light starts to intensify, obliterating all detail. Trees will become indistinct shapes in the mist, never coalesc...

Napowrimo 2020 Day 22- An Argument

less than 1 minute read

The sky sulks. Fresh insults rumble, shadows hide, small drops fall, before the clouds start shouting curses, throwing rain.

Napowrimo 2020 Day 21- Confessions

less than 1 minute read

I know they have secrets to spill, given everything they’ve witnessed. I’ve tried different approaches, asking “How are you?” directly or “Did you see the ga...

Napowrimo day 20- Ritual

less than 1 minute read

Thick mists and darkness linger. Crows try listlessly to call the day into being, to dissipate the vapour and somehow praise the unknown. One plummets, arrow...

A Response From the Black Box

15 minute read

One night last week, I thought I had a breakthrough. I was fiddling with a new set of code in the middle section of the input. I don’t work with the programm...

Napowrimo 2020 Day 19- The Movement of Boulders

less than 1 minute read

Given the kindness and cruelty of time, a majority forgot those years where the tilt of the earth increased. Only a degree. Or more. Scientists spoke, we did...

Quarranzine

less than 1 minute read

Malaka Gharib shared how to create a little 8-page zine about the whole COVID 19 situation, so I joined in last week. It came out surprisingly sincere. It re...

Napowrimo 2020 Day 18 - The Return

less than 1 minute read

When I landed I felt the weight of myself rush back into my body like water through an open dam. I was thankful for no longer being a raindrop. I saw the sky...

Napowrimo 2020 Day 17- Waiting

less than 1 minute read

My former body is discarded over a plastic chair, abandoned to numbness. Now I am these walls, the vending machine in the corner humming its constant mantra,...

Napowrimo 2020 Day 14 - Modified

less than 1 minute read

Purple clouds transform and jitter over the emerald sky. My limbs are sprawled over silicone grass as I observe butterflies flit in and out of existence. Eve...

Napowrimo day 10- Prospects

less than 1 minute read

Pious parsons pass pyres, proclaim pretty prayers, preach possessed portents.

Napowrimo 2020 Day 8 - Stagecraft

less than 1 minute read

What is going on? I ask the walls every sixteen minutes. The plasterboard doesn’t reply but without checking headlines

Napowrimo 2020 day 6- Symmetry

less than 1 minute read

Marigolds bloom geometrically, thriving under this square sun. Dodecagon pupils dilate.

Napowrimo 2020 day 5 - Simulated

1 minute read

Seemingly infinite, the night sky is the most consistent falsehood. The moon is nothing more than a hologram, the stars just dead pixels in the screen constr...

Napowrimo 2020 Day 4- Erosion

less than 1 minute read

On this day, a room darkened by a flash, unfamiliar faces are made abstract by developing camera technology. One is probably mine, now a stranger.

Napowrimo 2020 Day 4- Erosion

less than 1 minute read

On this day, a room darkened by a flash, unfamiliar faces are made abstract by developing camera technology. One is probably mine, now a stranger.

Napowrimo 2020 Day 3 - Peas

less than 1 minute read

It’s still magic. The emergence of green from damp soil, adder head coiling up, before unfurling, saluting the sun.

Free Books

less than 1 minute read

I've made a couple of my self published books free to download.There's Amber Stars: One Night of Stories, which is my first book of linked stories and Remain...

NaPoWriMo 2020 Day 1- The People

less than 1 minute read

We the spin, the shimmer. We the sway, the light, the contagion and the cure We the anointing and sometimes the penance.

The Oracle

less than 1 minute read

Forgive me, I have lost my lexicon of the future. Now I search the tangled entropy of brambles and bindweed. Nothing useful emerges, only woodlice.

Quick thoughts on editing

1 minute read

From Warren Ellis’ excellent newsletter1 Which I highly recommend  and you should all be subscribed to. ↩

Inside

less than 1 minute read

Whirl

less than 1 minute read

Resonance

less than 1 minute read

I joined a Facebook group 1 which has daily prompts. This one was written in response to the prompt: “How do you click: Write a poem filled with noise” poem....

Time’s gone weird

1 minute read

I have a fancy new profile picture thanks to Sam Cavender and his restored Mayima. Oooh medium format expired film. It makes me want to dig out my film camer...

Truth Bombs

12 minute read

This is the third story in a series I’m publishing monthly throughout 2020. More details here.

Reasons to stay at home

1 minute read

So we’re socially isolated for the foreseeable. It’s a weird time, but I’ve been amazed by how people are being incredibly generous. There is so much kindnes...

Contributor copy

less than 1 minute read

It’s always nice getting a contributor copy, especially for something you would have purchased anyway. This little book flew over the Atlantic for me, I’m lo...

Encrypted (video)

less than 1 minute read

Social isolation means I’m working through the backlog of things I have to do. So I uploaded this video of my poem Encrypted, which was kindly shot by Chris ...

A hobby

less than 1 minute read

Humans are more than money

less than 1 minute read

Humans are worth more than the contents of their bank accounts.  That should not be the only criteria we judge them on. Humans are part of society. Humans ar...

These Poems are Not What They Seem

less than 1 minute read

I’m delighted to have a poem included in an anthology of poems inspired by Twin Peaks, called These Poems are Not What They Seem, published by APEP publicati...

Squeamish

17 minute read

This is the second story in a series I’m publishing monthly throughout 2020. More details here.

Skylight

less than 1 minute read

Plants

less than 1 minute read

Complications

1 minute read

This essay from Jack Underwood blew me away, because he nails down thoughts I’ve had before but have struggled to put into words. He describes poetry as a ne...

Evening

less than 1 minute read

Night falls so quickly it breaks apart on impact. Dark shrapnel scatters.

Roots

less than 1 minute read

Inhale

less than 1 minute read

Shore

less than 1 minute read

On the radio

less than 1 minute read

I was very lucky to have a poem on BBC Radio Bristol’s Upload show. The poem is called Encrypted and was written for Tonic, which is an amazing night. You ge...

Assorted news and links

less than 1 minute read

Theres a new poem of mine up on Fevers of the Mind. Its called Failed Hypothesis, go here to read it.

Sirens

11 minute read

Just before the door swung open, Amber was certain she could hear voices. When she walked into the small office, they had lapsed into silence. It had sounded...

Lunar

less than 1 minute read

2019: books of the year

2 minute read

In 2019, I read 66 books, but a lot were poetry chapbooks or graphic novels. You can see most of the list on my GoodReads page if you want.

2019: year of contradictions

2 minute read

I’m late to the party with my year wrap up. It’s already the roaring twenties. 1 But I still think it is worth looking at where we have been so we can look t...

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2019

We’re here

less than 1 minute read

John Green’s podcast The Anthropocence Reviewed has been a consistent highlight this year, but the latest episode on Auld Lang Syne is particularly moving. T...

Tis the Season

less than 1 minute read

Come sip the festive juice. It tastes of cinnamon, cloves, something strange you can’t discern. Join us in the circle as we chant, Tis the Season, Tis the Se...

Brace brace brace

1 minute read

-and the clouds gather above your head, darker than you thought possible, bringing sudden night and you are now aware this field is too exposed and how you s...

Inside my commonplace book

2 minute read

Recently on Twitter, I replied to this tweet about keeping a private anthology.

This election

1 minute read

I’ve been avoiding the election cycle because its just so depressing. Lies after misinformation after racist dogwhistles after lies. It’s disheartening to se...

Move fast and break things

less than 1 minute read

We’ve found a way to monetize breath.It’s simply a game changer. Can you feelthe paradigms shifting under your feet?We are shaking up the world like a snowgl...

Dive

less than 1 minute read

The crowd

less than 1 minute read

Accidental plagarism

1 minute read

I read a poem at an open mic a couple of months back. I was quite pleased with it. Only recently did I realise the central image was almost the same as anoth...

Songs for November

less than 1 minute read

Pauline Seawards shared this and I just had to share it as well.

November

less than 1 minute read

The cold makes a home deep inside your weary bones. Frost glimmers and grins.

New poem at Highland Park Poetry

less than 1 minute read

Hello, I’m really pleased to have a new poem at Highland Park Poetry called Fluvial Dreams. All the poems are water themed. Check it out here.

6 Ways to Promote Your Book

2 minute read

Be active on social media.  Don’t just endlessly spam your book, engage with different conversations. Make book marketing personal! Get a professional t...

Rise

less than 1 minute read

Posters

less than 1 minute read

Obscured

less than 1 minute read

New Book Announcement- Our Voices In The Chaos

less than 1 minute read

I’m really excited to announce my debut chapbook is being published by the fine folks over at Selcouth Station. It’s called Our Voices in the Chaos and is a ...

Illusion

less than 1 minute read

Escape into Another World

2 minute read

There is a persistent view that refuses to be shaken that science fiction and fantasy are pure escapism. Usually, this view is from people with limited exper...

Brand Ambassador

1 minute read

we are just hear to tell the truth / tell the good as well as the bad / counteract all the lies / get our message out there / provide some much needed perspe...

How to Be Free

less than 1 minute read

Draw a line before your flat door. Put up a sign saying Do Not Cross. Disconnect your phone, gas, the broadband, electricity. Tear up the quarterly newslette...

Be quiet and listen

2 minute read

Open mic nights are wonderful spaces. They are brilliant places to try new work in front of audiences and get instant feedback. But more than that, they are ...

NaPoWriMo Lessons

3 minute read

I’ve done NaPoWriMo for the last three years. I’ve found it hugely useful to create new poetry and improve my craft. The process of writing thirty poems in t...

NaPoWriMo 2019 Day 1

1 minute read

For the last couple of years I've taken part in NaPoWriMo, where I try to write a poem every day in April. I've really enjoyed the process. It's got me back ...

Matter

less than 1 minute read

I slipped off the viewing platform, slid under the flimsy handrail fell down or forwards or up towards the black hole.I cursed flimsy safety measures but k...

Hunted

less than 1 minute read

With apologies to Emily Dickinson

Making the familiar strange

1 minute read

I though I was a good typist. I’ve written on computers all my life. I type fast. But the truth is half my time is spent correcting errors. I write fast but ...

Sharp Objects and genre blindspots

2 minute read

Genre fiction is often used to describe science fiction and fantasy, but everything fits into a genre. People tend to dismiss sci-fi as not belonging to the ...

Starting again

2 minute read

Towards the end of last year, I finished two major projects I had been working on for ages, a short story collection and a poetry collection. I finished them...

Thoughts on ‘Annihilation’

1 minute read

For my first book of the year, I sped through Jeff Vandermeer’s Annihilation, the first in the Southern Reach Trilogy. It is classified as science fiction, b...

Resolutions

1 minute read

I’ll finally tidy up this place and keep it neat. It’s too dark! Too many cobwebs and not enough flaming torches. I’ll stop leaving tomes half opened on the ...

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2018

Best of 2018

4 minute read

It’s that time again when I examine what media I’ve consumed over the past twelve months and pick my favourites. Defining the best of anything is an entirely...

2018 in Review: A Poem

1 minute read

In previous years I’ve written rambly, angry blog posts that tried to make sense of the world around me and mostly failed. This year I’ve given up trying to ...

Why Writers Should Exercise

4 minute read

The problem of writing is that you spend too much time in your own head. Even if you do it as a side hobby as I do, you can spend a lot of time imagining fut...

Recent Published Writing

less than 1 minute read

Some funky spiral stairs in Oxford. Irrelevant to my writing but they looked cool.

Ten Miserable Years of Austerity

4 minute read

Like the rest of the UK, I’ve been steadfastly ignoring anything to do with Brexit. It’s like there’s a ticking time-bomb hanging over our heads and we are d...

A haiku

less than 1 minute read

Soft wind and raindrops play a tune on dying leaves. I have all I need

Upfest

less than 1 minute read

Houses have faded to grey. Colour slumbers. We drag our feet down monochrome streets, blinded by persistent monotony, unable to see the edge of the pavement ...

The Sound of Silence

3 minute read

A couple of weeks ago, I went to a Quaker wedding. 1 As part of the ceremony, we sat in silence for close to an hour, punctuated now and then by someone spea...

Signal Vs. Noise

4 minute read

16 AWFUL THINGS HEADS OF STATE HAVE TWEETED TODAY THAT YOU WON'T BELIEVE! GLOBAL WARMING WILL BE 'FANTASTIC FOR BUSINESS' SAYS POWERFUL SOCIOPATH! SOMEONE DI...

The Power of Paper

3 minute read

There’s a magical tool that allows you to focus right in on any problem. Or you can broaden it out and use it to explore the inner workings of your mind. It ...

napowrimo 2018 Day 1

less than 1 minute read

I’m doing this again. Last year I quite enjoyed the process of creating a brand new poem every day in April so have decided to do it again.

Creative Anxieties: Fear of not writing enough

5 minute read

This blog post is late. I was meant to write it last week, but life got it the way, as it always seems to do. It's not just this week's though; the self-impo...

30 things I don’t know at 30

2 minute read

There’s a certain kind of article you stumble across now and then which consists of important things people have learnt about life. Usually these are linked ...

Advice to Myself: Writing and Resolutions

5 minute read

At the start of the year, we tend to set goals and resolutions. This year is going to be the year I start eating healthy, the year I finally learn guitar or ...

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2017

Best of 2017

5 minute read

Much like I did last year, I thought I’d take some time to linger on what I enjoyed this year. I’ve already written up my thoughts on the terrible events in ...

2017 in Review: Laughing at the Naked Emperor

5 minute read

So the year isn’t technically over yet. There’s still a good couple of weeks for things to go completely south. I’m travelling first thing next year so I tho...

Flash Fiction: The Problems of Renting

4 minute read

Hello? This is Frank. I came in yesterday to pick up the keys for flat 65. OK? I don’t see why you have to look it up on the computer, it was only yesterday....

What I learned on my break

4 minute read

It’s been a while, hasn’t it? How are you? Are you still doing that thing with them and everything else? Oh really? Good to hear.

Lies, Dreaming

less than 1 minute read

I’m delighted to feature again on the latest Lies, Dreaming podcast from the brilliant people at Poetry as Fuck. It’s a small little story about lost treasur...

Taking a Break

1 minute read

I’m currently in the business of moving across the country. I’m packing up my whole life into boxes. Every time I move I forget how all consuming and stressf...

There is No Exit: Flash Fiction

5 minute read

A quick flash fiction written from a prompt from Chuck Wendig once again. This time, the prompt was ‘There is no exit.

The Thief of Moons: Flash Fiction

4 minute read

A story written from a prompt by Chuck Wendig at Terrible Minds. This week we had to pick a title, so I chose the Thief of Moons. Enjoy!

Battle of the Ages in the Election

5 minute read

So there’s an election on Thursday. You might have heard of it. You probably have your own opinions one way or another. Maybe you don’t care. But either way,...

Dispatches from the Uncanny Valley

4 minute read

Kodomoroid communication android by Osaka University and ATR Laboratories, Japan, c. 2014. Photo by Melissa Wiseman

A Debate: Flash Fiction

4 minute read

KATIE NEWSINGTON: Welcome back. A new study suggests the moon has a more abundant mineral content than previously realised. Interesting stuff. Joining us to ...

Oak Tree Manor: Flash Fiction

7 minute read

Another story from a prompt at Terrible Minds. This week was a mash-up of genres. I got ‘Haunted House’ and ‘Body Horror’. Enjoy!

Everything is a story

4 minute read

One of the things reading a lot of fiction teaches you is that everything we rely on in the real world is made up. We are narrative beings and we rely on the...

At the End of NaPoWriMo

3 minute read

I wrote a bit about the process halfway through, but I’ve finally finished NaPoWriMo, where you write a poem every single day in April. I had foolishly thoug...

Jerusalem, Ambition and the Power of Ideas

4 minute read

It’s taken me three and a half months, but I finally finished Alan Moore’s magnum opus Jerusalem.  Made of a number of interlinked short stories set in North...

NaPoWriMo Halfway through

3 minute read

For the month of April, I have tried to write a poem a day for NaPoWriMo (National Poetry Writing Month.) It’s been surprisingly difficult to find a differen...

My accidental novel: Thoughts on first drafts

4 minute read

I accidentally wrote a novel. Well, it certainly started that way. I started working on a short story in December, setting out a really basic outline and run...

Jabberwocky Remixed

2 minute read

Inspired by Poetry as Fuck and Imaginary Advice, I spent a morning remixing* Jabberwocky* by Lewis Carrol. Because…? I’m not really sure why. Anyway, here ar...

The New Religion of Brexit

4 minute read

Finally, after 9 months of legal battles and back and forth in parliament, it looks like Article 50 is about to be triggered and the UK can start its negotia...

Good Boy: Flash Fiction

4 minute read

[Prompt from here]http://terribleminds.com/ramble/2017/03/03/flash-fiction-challenge-right-vs-wrong/

George Saunders and Normalisation

4 minute read

In these days of increasing insanity in the world of politics, I find myself thinking more and more about the fiction of George Saunders. He understands that...

Step Away from the Internet

5 minute read

Every few months or so, an article comes around that reminds me I’m spending too much time on the internet, looking at pointless things and wasting time. Thi...

Alternative facts and the rule of misinformation

4 minute read

Bloody hell, what a terrible phrase ‘Alternative facts’ is. Similar to last years ‘post-truth’ that the UK media were so fond of last year, it seems the Amer...

A Press Conference

5 minute read

I am here today to announce there is nothing wrong. Nothing at all. Everything is fine. Rumours you may have heard to the contrary are simply that- rumours. ...

Enduring art (Same as it ever was)

3 minute read

I was listening to the rather excellent Book Shambles podcast the other day. It is a rambling discussion about books and literature, usually with a guest to ...

A response to Laurie Gough

4 minute read

In another example of running a controversial story to get clicks, the Huffington Post published an article by Laurie Gough that argues that self-publishing ...

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2016

Best of 2016

5 minute read

2016 was a curious year. Politics ate itself and the internet took over all discourse. But personally, it was pretty good. I published two books, one a colle...

2016: The Year the Internet took over

5 minute read

What a year. It started with David Bowie dying and somehow went downhill from there. A rabid media stirring up hate forced the British people to shoot themse...

Pulp vs. Perfection

4 minute read

On a long coach journey back from Leeds a couple of weekends ago, I listened to Chris Gethard’s podcast Beautiful Stories from Anonymous People. I was recomm...

November Link Round up

1 minute read

Now the nights are drawing in and daylight is a distant memory. We surrender ourselves to the dark and cold, waiting and hibernating until spring.

Podcast

less than 1 minute read

Hello

Remain Vigilant

less than 1 minute read

I have a new ebook available. It’s called Remain Vigilant: Two Linked One- Act Plays. It’s available from Amazon or Smashwords. Smashwords is pay what you like

What does it matter?

4 minute read

In the shock generated in the wake of the US election, one refrain I keep hearing from people was what does it matter to us? Sure, people feel bad for the US...

October Link Round Up

2 minute read

Summer is a distant memory now. We huddle around the fire for warmth and watch the leaves slowly drift to the ground. It’s chilly outside. Best to draw up th...

The importance of a creative routine

2 minute read

One of the most important changes I have implemented in the last couple of years has been a creative routine. I find it helpful to work regularly towards a g...

‘The Shock Doctrine’ and the Modern World.

4 minute read

Oh boy. If ever there was a book that was designed to make you furious about the current state of the world, this is it. Although The Shock Doctrine was publ...

September Link Round up

1 minute read

Summer has flown away, the trees are turning and autumn has hit with a punch overnight. All of a sudden it’s a bit grim outside and we hunker down, gather st...

Rediscovering poetry

2 minute read

When I was a teenager, I wrote poetry. Well, maybe that’s the wrong word. It was half-baked doggerel chopped up into lines that showed how really angsty I wa...

The Ambiguity of Captain Fantastic

2 minute read

Captain Fantastic is a brilliant film. Sensitive and compassionate, it tells the story of a family isolated from society, who are forced to go cross country ...

August bits and bobs

2 minute read

I was away for a large portion of August, with my phone deliberately turned off. I was in the Isle of Skye and saw amazing things, like the sunset above. As ...

Theatre and the Art of the Possible

3 minute read

I’m just back from a week in Scotland. I spent a couple of days at the Edinburgh Fringe, then onto the incredibly beautiful Isle of Skye.Then back to Edinbur...

Writing Fast and Sloppy

2 minute read

So this is a post on freewriting and i am carrying on writing without stopping and i can’t stop i just have to keep writing writing got to keep writing and-

July Links: Summer was on a Tuesday this year

1 minute read

I’ve been really busy this month with all good things. I went to three music festivals, canoed down the Thames and generally had lots of good times.. But in ...

Just Walk Away: On Cynicism and Subjectivity

3 minute read

I was at Tramlines music festival in Sheffield at the weekend. There was sunshine, there was music, there was booze. Lots of good times were had. One of the ...

Ponyo and Adaptation

2 minute read

Ponyo is a joyous film, a celebration of childhood and youth with beautiful visuals. It’s pure joy from start to finish, with inventive twists and a unique s...

Brexit and the story we have been told

4 minute read

Given the clusterfuck that is happening in the UK at the moment, I’m probably going to be doing a few more political posts in the future. Just a heads up as ...

Love, not hate

2 minute read

On Saturday, some wanker walked into a nightclub in Orlando and killed 50 people with a rifle, injuring many others. It was an act of hate against the LGBTQ ...

A Knock on the door

5 minute read

I wrote this in response to a prompt over at Terribleminds.com. It’s a bit rough, but I hope you enjoy Shake-Up

Feeding my writing through a digital shredder

1 minute read

About a year ago, I got frustrated with my writing and decided to mess around with my first drafts and discarded attempts at stories. They had been languishi...

May Link Round-up

3 minute read

Another month gone already. It feels like no time at all since I wrote my last link roundup, but here we are again. This month I’ve mostly been reading The B...

The Bone Clocks by David Mitchell

2 minute read

I’ve been a fan of David Mitchell since reading Cloud Atlas in my early twenties. Since then, I have enjoyed almost everything he has written, so I was excit...

‘Show Your Work!’ Six weeks in

2 minute read

I mentioned in a previous post how I was inspired to share more of my writing byShow Your Work! by Austin Kleon. This little book has been surprisingly helpf...

The Cement Garden by Ian McEwan- Book Review

2 minute read

I picked this short novella up recently and devoured it in about a day. Having previously read some of Ian McEwan’s later novels such as Saturday and On Ches...

The Work Never Stops

2 minute read

After I published my first book of short stories, Amber Stars, I took a week off writing. I enjoyed the achievement of actually finishing a project and publi...

Newspaper Blackout Poems

1 minute read

In the past month, I’ve been messing around with a strange form of ‘writing’ called blackout poems. I was inspired by Austin Kleon, who helped popularise the...

Zaireeka and the live experience

2 minute read

The live music experience is still thriving, even as CD sales fall. For many bands, it is the primary way of making a living. It seems odd that even as we de...

Thoughts on ‘High Rise’

2 minute read

Last Saturday, somewhat spontaneously, I went to see High Rise, the newest film by Ben Wheatley. I’d previously seen Sightseers and A Field in England and en...

On Writing and Publishing a Book

1 minute read

Last Good Friday, I found myself hunched over the computer, fiddling with styles and formatting while outside was bright sunshine. It was all in aid of getti...

Marbles and Creation

1 minute read

Why not take five minutes out of your day to watch this:

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