Flights of Fancy

WellingtonRetreatThere’s a great deal of cruelty in the news right now. It’s one of the reasons behind my Lenten retreat from social media. Still I can’t escape it altogether. A dear friend has been deeply affected by a child murder close to where she lives. Reality insists on being seen – so why on earth do I chose to write fantasy, to make impossible things up? Continue reading

Monsters – not just for fantasy writers


Geek Sphinx by Mage Cat

Last week I considered metamorphosis – prompted by listening  to Dame Marina Warner at The Sussex Centre for Folklore, Fairytale and Fantasy. Whilst I was pondering unnerving transformations, images of many strange mythical hybrid creatures came to mind (some prompted by this month’s Mslexia.)  What is their attraction – and what does it matter to modern storytelling? Continue reading



Oliver Cromwell by Samuel Cooper

Apparently, an interregnum is the period between two reigns. In English History, it can refer to the time between Charles I ‘s execution and the arrival of Charles II, whilst we had a Republic (30 January 1649 – 29 May 1660)

Metaphorically, it can mean any suspension of government from the end of one regime to the beginning of another. I rather feel  I am in one… Continue reading

The Song, not the Singer

Frank_Sinatra_PDMost people would agree that Frank Sinatra had a wonderful voice. Think of ‘Strangers in the Night ‘ with its lush romance or ‘New York, New York!’ – so full of life. He was stylish and popular for at least five decades. But would you want him as a friend? Or could you see him as a hero? Continue reading

Making it real

 Ever started a book that’s beautifully written and cleverly constructed, perhaps praised by others – and yet failed to get into it? Or gone to see a film with fantastic special effects, witty dialogue and a cool premise – only to find you’re unmoved? I’ve been thinking about what makes the difference, what makes you care… Continue reading