Thursday 24 February 2022

Writing Workshop: Reviewing

     I want to have a little chat this month about reviewing. Reviewing is a crucial part of the writing process. It’s when we routinely sit down and reread what we have already written and should become a part of your daily writing routine. 

Why is it so important? There are two main reasons.

The first is that it helps refresh our memory as to where a story is going. If, before we start our writing for the day, we read through the scene that we wrote the day previous, it gives us a clarity as to what were thinking and helps us remember where the plot was headed and how we were developing the characters. This stops us from throwing in weird random plot changes or character quirks that readers often find off-putting. There is nothing more frustrating when reading a story where a character’s personality does a sudden u-turn or the plot leaps about all over the place. Reviewing can help nip this in the bud right at the beginning of the creative process.

The second is that reviewing plays a role in a constant editing process and therefore makes any large edit later on so much less of a burden. If we review something we wrote 24 hours previous with fresh eyes, we will pick up weird little typos, phrases that we might be overusing, inconsistencies in spellings of names — all that sort of thing. These are the sorts of mistakes which really slow down that large edit when we’ve finished the story at the end of the first draft. If we clear a lot of these annoyances out of the way as we go along, then that large edit becomes far more enjoyable as we are concerned more with polishing the story than locating masses of hidden errors.

I have a lot more of these videos over on my YouTube channel. I also have an active Facebook Page and a Group as well as the obligatory Twitter and Instagram. Should you want to receive monthly updates about my writings and escapades, then you can sign up to my monthly newsletter here

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Wednesday 9 February 2022

February Update - New Kickstarter and new collection.

Good morning from a chilly but sunny Lancaster!

I have two very exciting pieces of news to share with you this month. The first is that the Kickstarter campaign for If Ye Loathe Me is not only live, but also reached its target in just over two hours. Also, it has already surpassed my previous anthology Hide Not Thou Thy Face in the amount of money raised. At a time when folks are having to tighten their purse strings following the effects of lockdowns and pandemics, I am absolutely blown away by this generosity. I send my heartfelt thanks to everyone who has backed it so far and, if you want to dive in and grab yourself a copy, along with one of the numerous rewards that accompany them, then please click on the link here.

But, If Ye Loathe Me will not be my first bookbaby to be birthed in 2022. That honour goes to the Macabre Collection: Volume One. A few years ago, I published The Children of Cain Vampire Omnibus, collecting together all the vampire stories from my first three anthologies. I thought it would be only right to do the same for all the other weird and wonderful tales from those books. So for the first time, all seventeen horror shorts are bound together in one volume. I absolutely adore the creepy clown artwork and will be premiering it at Durham Comic Con on 6th March. 

If you want to order a signed copy direct from me, please drop me a line through the contacts form over at my website here. Alternatively, you can pick them up from Amazon by following the links on my site here.

Right, I’m off for a quick hike out up to the Crook O’Lune while this nice weather holds. Take care and chat soon.


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