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Creative writing

British & Irish authors’ organisations: who should I join?

Joining an authors’ trade organisation has been on my to-do list since I decided to take this gig seriously. I’ve put it off because there are as surprising number of British and Irish authors’ organisations. Now that I’ve done the research, I thought I’d put it out there for other writers to use. Why do […]

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book reviews Creative writing Horror

Book vs film: The Colour Out Of Space by HP Lovecraft

The Book Corner season 5: Book vs film. Episode 7: The Colour Out Of Space by HP Lovecraft. Hold on to your sanity for 1927’s The Colour Out Of Space by HP Lovecraft, and its 2019 adaptation starring Nicolas Cage. The Book Corner The Book Corner is a regular break from critiquing for the writing […]

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Blood Point Folklore

The National Leprechaun Museum

TripAdvisor’s top Dublin museums might include Guinness, whiskey, and Kilmainham Gaol, but no writer or lover of good stories should visit the city without a stop at the National Leprechaun Museum. Ireland’s storytelling tradition goes back to the dawn of Irish history, and the National Leprechaun Museum is a tribute to the nation’s wild oral […]

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book reviews Creative writing

Book vs film: The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold

The Book Corner season 5: Book vs film. Episode 6: The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold. Alice Sebold’s 2002 debut novel delivered a bold and uplifting take on a brutal child murder story. In 2009, The Lovely Bones became a film by Peter Jackson, but neither the critics nor the box office warmed to his […]

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book reviews Creative writing

Secrets of the Book Corner

Most book reviewers do it to share their opinions. As a writer, I want to discover what I think about the craft so that I can improve. That’s where the Book Corner comes in. Book reviewers usually cover new releases and classics (because the algorithms love a classic). My selections are governed by the whims […]

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book reviews Creative writing Horror Science Fiction

Book vs film: Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro

The Book Corner season 5: Book vs film. Episode 5: Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro Ishiguro’s sixth novel was published in 2005 and its film adaptation, scripted by Alex Garland, was released in 2010. Read on, and I’ll explain why the novel is a great example of bad storytelling that the film fails […]

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book reviews Creative writing

Amazon Author Central asked for five book tips…here’s 15

Amazon has updated Author Central and asked me to recommend five books for five questions. Here’s a few more for your TBR. If you’ve never heard of Amazon Author Central, it’s like a micro-site for every author. You can host a bio, photos, and now suggest books you like. For the update, Amazon asks you […]

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Creative writing Science Fiction

Space archaeology: how to make the future look alive

Space archaeology is a real job, but how did it combine with the sci-fi classic Alien to help me write better characters? Next time you’re watching a film or TV show set in the future, see how many personal items you can find. I’ll wager it’s very few. Real life isn’t like that. Our cars, […]

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book reviews Creative writing

Book vs film: A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula Le Guin

The Book Corner season 5: Book vs film. Episode 4: A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula Le Guin vs Tales from Earthsea by Goro Miyazaki A Wizard of Earthsea became an instant classic of children’s fantasy when it arrived in 1968. It launched six novels exploring the wizards, peoples, lands and creatures of the Earthsea […]

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Folklore

Happy Halloween: the meme that reinfected Ireland

Happy Halloween, or Oíche Shamhna shona duit. This ancient Celtic pagan festival is a big deal in Ireland, where the Monday before is a bank holiday, houses are decorated and children dress up to trick or treat. Some say Ireland is the home of Halloween, although it’s celebrated as far south as Brittany and there […]