Recently in a fiction workshop someone asked the question every sensible writer dreads: how do I write characters who are outside my own personal experience, who are not white/ straight/ cis? I say that every sensible writer dreads this question because in my experience the ones who steam roll right in with more bluster than caution are morons. And their lazy attitude is doing everyone - their readers, their characters, and other writers - a disservice.Read More
Hello. It’s 2019. Is it passe to say Happy New Year?
It’s been radio silence here for the past four weeks because…drum roll…I’ve been writing! As in actual words and sentences and paragraphs and scenes and things that could possibly even be called CHAPTERS. Every time I manage to get words on a page it really does feel miraculous.Read More
Sometimes we talk about stories like this: the story is an entity with its own consciousness. The story arrives, via a muse. The story reveals itself as it is being written. Writers are mere scribes. This airy-fairy, woo-woo, magical thinking is a whole lot of nonsense. Writing isn't magic. It's good old-fashioned hard work. It is sitting your butt in the chair every single day and forcing yourself to do the work.Read More
While signing books in Halifax last week, a reader asked me if I was still in touch with any of the people from the boat.Read More