Reviews

‘Christine Poulson’s wonderful sense of place brings Cambridge to life. Cassie overcomes the problems facing her with wit and guile aplenty and ensures the reader’s empathy from first word to last . . . an enthralling and engaging read that underlines Christine’s burgeoning reputation as a crime novelist to watch.’ [Stage Fright]

- SHOTS MAGAZINE

More Guilty Pleasures

I’ve got more books on writing than I can bring myself to tell you. There’s some justification. They’ve been essential tools in learning how to write. And then too writing is a solitary occupation and it’s good to have a few old friends handy on shelf to turn to when I grind to a halt. But do I really need to have so many? In truth they are something of an addiction.So here are a few favourites. For inspiration, rather than technique there’s Dorothea Brande’s classic BECOMING A WRITER (first published 1934) and Brenda Ueland’s IF YOU WANT TO WRITE (first published 1938). I wish I’d known Brenda – the biography in the front of her book notes that she received an international swimming record for the over-80s and was knighted by the King of Norway. As for her book, what woman writer wouldn’t warm to this chapter heading: ‘Why Women who do too much housework should neglect it for their writing.’ Now that I’ve got it down from the shelf, I want to read it again. Also good when I need a pep talk are James M Frey’s HOW TO WRITE A DAMN GOOD NOVEL II and Stephen King’s ON WRITING.
Plot and structure are what I have always found most difficult and in the early days Robert J Ray’s THE WEEK-END NOVELIST and Robert Mackee’s STORY: SUBSTANCE, STRUCTURE, STYLE AND THE PRINCIPLES OF SCREEN WRITING were constant companions. I still go back to them. And then there’s Lawrence’s Block’s books on writing, one of which has the great title, TELLING LIES FOR FUN AND PROFIT and . . .But you get the idea.
And do I find myself reading about writing instead of actually writing? What do you think?