Schools

In this, the closing year of the centenary of the 1914-1918 war, there’s a wealth of information online about the First World War, or the Great War as people called it back then, as well as scores of new books and novels, TV documentaries and thousands of hours of radio broadcasts, all looking back at this terrible period in history, and trying to make sense of a conflagration that seems at first sight to have little rhyme or reason.

As we approach the 100th anniversary of the Armistice that ended the war in November 1918, I’ll blog about some of the sites I’ve found most useful in addition to the books that have helped me most to understand (as far as I can) what happened and why. To see what’s already posted here, please check out the category “Resurrecting the Past” in the Practical Writing Tips drop-down box.

It was by chance that I began writing about this appalling conflict: Andersen Press ran a WW1 short story competition for students of the Masters degree in creative writing for young people I was attending at Bath Spa University. The prize was publication in War Girls (2014), and I was lucky enough to win. The Goose Road is the novelisation of that story. Thus I have – off and on – been researching the Great War for about the same amount of time that the fighting lasted on the main battle fronts in Europe – although war continued in Russia for years afterwards, and its effects reverberate still.

If your interest is less in World War One and more in the craft of writing, then do have a good look around my other blog posts. These are also easiest to navigate via the Practical Writing Tips box. Here you’ll find tricks of the writing trade, self-editing tools, and posts about my own journey to publication.

For a little light relief, you’ll also find at least one gallery of pictures of my darling dog – with more to follow, no doubt!

Teachers, as a trained children’s fiction editor, a mentor for adult writers and a journalist as well as a novelist for teens, I’m happy to talk to classes from Y6 to sixth form, and to devise bespoke creative writing workshops. If you’d like to know more, please see the contacts page about ways to get in touch.