Here’s part 2 of my post about aspects of Corsica that I find inspiring as a writer. Some of them appear in my novels The House at Zaronza and The Corsican Widow, but all of them are things I want to keep experiencing. In writing this post, I have realised that 10 is far too few. So I’ll just have to keep going.Continue reading “Ten Inspiring Things About #Corsica: Part 2”
Normally, I interview real live people. But today, I thought I’d let one of my characters have her say. So joining me on the chaise longue today for some Corsican vin de myrte (myrtle berry wine) and a bit of bean-spilling is my main character from The House at Zaronza, Maria Orsini.Continue reading “On the Chaise Longue with Vanessa: Meet Maria Orsini, Main Character in ‘The House at Zaronza’”
Restricting this to just 10 things has been difficult. Below are five of my favourite Corsican things, places or experiences: find the next five here. They are all part of the landscape/history/culture that inspired my novels The House at Zaronza and The Corsican Widow and will continue to inspire my future writing about Corsica, whether fiction or non-fiction.Continue reading “Ten Inspiring Things About Corsica: Part 1”
This week it’s my great pleasure to welcome my virtual friend, author Louise Charles (whose real name is Jo Lamb). Louise is a talented author and founder of ex-pat writing community Writers Abroad. She self-published her historical novel, The Duke’s Shadow, in 2014, which was shortlisted as one of the finest eight novels in the Writers Village International Novel Award in summer 2014.Continue reading “On the Chaise Longue with Vanessa: Meet Author Louise Charles @LouCwriter”
A fellow author interviewed me recently for a forthcoming slot on her blog. I won’t spill any beans, except to say that she asked me some thought-provoking questions, one of which was about writing historical fiction, my genre of choice. I gave a concise answer, and I still believe what I said, but have been reflecting on it ever since.
Every genre of writing presents problems to overcome. But reading Hilary Mantel’s novels, among others, has made me reflect on the difficulties of writing historical fiction. I hasten to add I don’t have the answers to the questions I raise below. Continue reading “Period Pieces: How Much History Should be in Your Fiction?”
Today I’m delighted to welcome the versatile and irrepressible novelist Nancy Jardine to the blog. She’s writing about using images. So, over to you, Nancy.
Images. Who loves to pop them onto a blog or Facebook post? Or use them in advertising material for a new book launch? Or use them in a book trailer video? Me! I raise my hand without hesitation. I can’t help it – I think it’s the ex-upper-stages-primary teacher in me believing that a visual stimulus can often make a more lasting impact than the written word.Continue reading “Guest post: What a lovely picture! What a lovely photograph….”
A warm welcome to my first victim visitor. Joining me on the chaise longue today is novelist and fellow Crooked Cat Publishing author Miriam Drori. Her début novel Neither Here Nor There was published last year. Thanks for visiting and agreeing to answer my questions, Miriam. Let’s get started.Continue reading “On the Chaise Longue with Vanessa: Meet Author @MiriamDrori”
Two bits of news. First, after much dithering, I have finally started the sequel to The House at Zaronza. When I say started, I mean that I have begun to plan it in detail. The actual writing comes a bit later. Continue reading “New Departures”
I went to a very interesting talk at the Parisot Literary Festival in October 2013 by former journalist and think-tank head Martin Walker. It was about why France is a happy hunting ground for authors. Martin should know: he has written a successful series of novels set in the Dordogne about Bruno, an engaging local policeman.Continue reading “Why Corsica Should be a Happy Hunting Ground for Authors”
I don’t make New Year’s resolutions. I invariably break them before January is over. And there’s something about these worthy tablets of stone that kills one’s enthusiasm even before they are fully formulated.
For a few years, I faithfully used to set out my writing goals for the year. I even tried to make them SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound), as all good goals should be, or so I was taught when I took my MBA. Continue reading “Milestones or millstones? Or how to stop beating yourself up when your writing goals elude you”