Crime with Shane Maloney

I’m three-quarters of the way through a novel-writing boot camp – a course run by  Writers Victoria in Melbourne. The tutor is Shane Maloney, who is excellent at keeping us focused and giving us lots of useful insights. We’re a mixed bunch of pupils, some in the early stages of plotting a novel, some much further down the track. The subject matter we cover between us is very varied, but the basic principles of knocking a book into shape are relevant to all of us, and I think everyone is finding the course useful and inspiring. Three Wednesday afternoons down, one to go. I’m working on resurrecting a crime novel set in the Channel Islands that I came close to getting published in the UK years ago, with a view to trying again now I’m in Australia. I’ve posted a sample from it on the new extracts page I’ve just started.

After a couple of months of not writing very much at all, I suddenly find myself working on a crime novel, polishing some new poems, and plotting a new idea for a short story – much like the weather, which has now broken after a long dry spell. Extended metaphor there, I think, about long-awaited rains bringing forth blossom and fruit – but I’ll leave someone else to turn it into a corny poem!

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A Blast from the Past

I found out this week that I’m still getting royalties from a short story first broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2002! I knew it had had several repeats, but apparently it’s been retransmitted in Belgium, Ireland, the Netherlands and Switzerland, and used for educational recording in the UK. Huge respect to the Authors Licensing and Collecting Society for keeping track of these things on behalf of the writers.