National Novel Writing Month

I’ve just been reminded that it’s National Novel Writing Month in November. Click here for details (if you’re brave enough and have unbelievable literary stamina and commitment).

Best of luck to everyone who takes part. Power to your writing fingers!

New Old Language

I have been doing some research into Anglo-Saxons, as part of a story I’m working on is going to be set there. Part of my research was to do with dialect and language at the time. The furthest I’ve gone back is Chaucer so I really had no idea what Saxon ‘English’ would look or sound like.

One of the lovely staff members at my library, Liz, is a bit of an expert on this sort of thing, and gave me some verse from the time. I think it’s fascinating so I thought I’d post a bit here.

Here’s how it begins:

The Battle of Brunanburh

Her æþelstan cyning, eorla dryhten, beorna beahgifa, and his broþor eac, Eadmund æþeling, ealdorlangne tir geslogon æt sæcce sweorda ecgum ymbe Brunanburh.

Which means:

In this year King Aethelstan, Lord of warriors,ring-giver to men, and his brother also,Prince Eadmund, won eternal glory in battle with sword edges around Brunanburh.


Sticking with the Anglo-Saxon theme, I thought I should mention that the poem Beowulf, is currently being made into a film. The fantastic Neil Gaiman has had a hand in writing it, and the cast list looks pretty good too.

Here are a couple of links:

A Successful Bank Holiday

I had a lovely and successful bank holiday. I did, as I had promised myself, make full use of it. On Saturday I cleaned my office so it went from this to this.

And what else did I do? Well I went for a nice walk through the fields and I played squash. And on Monday I went to Manchester Museum. And all this with my girlie. The museum I particularly enjoyed. If anyone’s in the area I’d highly recommend a visit. They’ve got everything – some great fossils (including a T-rex skeleton), a fab Ancient Egyptian bit and some wonderful Native American Indian (my favourite) stuff. I could have stayed there all day. Great day.

I realised last night that it’s less than a month before my book is published, which is exciting to say the least.

And I’ve only worn a suit once this week.


It occured to me that last week, as a result of attending meetings, tutoring etc. etc. I spent four days in a suit (not four whole days; I did take it off to go bed). Now I know that’s not anything exceptional in itself, I used to wear a suit for five or six days a week when I worked in my previous job, but it is a little different for me now, and reminds me that I have been that busy and it was okay to feel so bloody knackered at the end of the week.

I know next week’s only a short one (because, yes I am going to take advantage of the extra day’s holiday on offer for once), but I’m very much looking forward to getting back into the, relatively uninterrupted, writing swing of things. Very much.

So there it is. Me in my suit on Friday (not looking as jaded as I felt) in front of a display the library have put up of some work the children attending one of my workshops did. I’ll put some photos of the work they did (which was really impressive) up here when I’ve had chance to sort through them. Photo courtesy of Alison.


And here’s another. A great writer and ‘Neo-Mythologist.’

And another (link and great writer, I mean!).

Go on then, one more:

Some more links

Here are a couple of interesting links to the blogs of some interesting people. I’ll whack ’em up here for the time being, simply because I’ve not yet worked out how to put them in the Links section.

Roger’s Plog.

As an aside, you can buy Roger’s book, Taking Comfort, by clicking here. It really is very, very good.

My First Comment!

Just wanted to say a big thanks to the lovely and hugely talented Kate for being the first person to comment on my little ol’ blog. The first of many, I hope. Cheers Kate.

More of me on the net

I notice those nice people over at Wordpool have now added me to their wonderful Contact an Author site. There are plenty of great writers on there so if anyone wants to contact one then they should click here.


I’ve not had all that much time to do all the things I wanted to (and really should) do recently. Like writing, editing, rewriting, cleaning my office, the list goes on but I’ll not bore you. And why is this? Where has all my time gone? It’s because I’ve been going to lots of meetings and meeting lots of very nice people in order to organise the book tour that I’ll be embarking on when I Met a Roman… is realeased in the Autumn.

I’ll post the dates when they’re confirmed, but in the meantime I’ll leave you with something that should give you an idea of what to expect.

Above is a photo of Miss Hughes’ class from Bollington Cross school (and me) after a workshop I did with them a few months ago. I’m seeing them again in November and I’m very much looking forward to it.

I should also add that it’s for ages 6-9 and, as a lot of its content is based on the national curriculum, it’s ideal for anyone who’s studying key stage 1 or 2 history and literacy.