Thursday, October 04, 2018

National Poetry Day special offer!


It's National Poetry Day here in the UK today, and to celebrate, I have a special offer: buy a copy of my poetry collection, Terms & Conditions and get a FREE copy of my poetry pamphlet, Nothing Here Is Wild, Everything Is Open, FREE postage in the UK (£3 for rest of world) – and I will donate £1 from every sale to Book Aid International, a charity making sure everyone has access to books.

UK £9.99 + free postageBuy Now Button

Rest of world: £9.99 + £3 postage Buy Now Button

Saturday, September 08, 2018

The White Road Audiobook!

Today's the 10th birthday of my first book, The White Road & Other Stories, published in 2008 by the fab Salt Publishing! To celebrate, I've made an audiobook with the wonderful Soundbite Recording, which will be out later this month. Here's a teaser:

 More info on the book here>>

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Powers of Ten

I'm very happy to have found a home at the Blue Fifth Review for an odd little hybrid poem/fiction inspired by the wonderfully strange 1970s science film "Powers of Ten" ! You can read the piece here and watch the film below!

Friday, July 27, 2018

Writing and Mental Health

I've never been asked questions about writing and mental health & well-being before - here is an excerpt from my responses to questions by the Ignis Poetry Collective, a new organisation aiming to "explore and improve mental health via poetry and writing"
Do you think there has there been a direct impact upon your mental health/well-being as a result of leaving behind science journalism in favour of fiction and poetry? 

Yes – I was much calmer when I was a science journalist! I had some sort of structure, I had deadlines, I was being paid for each article, and more than that I was leaving the house to meet fascinating people, learning about new technologies and breakthroughs, it was very stimulating, I loved that job. But writing fiction was my dream from childhood, and at a certain point there was no more ignoring that. When I started writing short stories, I also started experiencing great mood swings and anxiety, because I was delving inside myself, spending more time alone – and obviously no-one was waiting for me to produce anything, and the chances of getting paid for it were fairly slim.
You can read the full interview here:

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Talking about reading... and writing

Two new interviews with me this week - the first is an audio piece over at the Royal Literary Fund's website in which I talk about my reading habits and reference the Large Hadron Collider (of course):

'The first writing course I ever went on was actually a reading course. The library was my church as a child, but I'd never stopped to look at the page as a writer might'

Listen to the piece (which is 3 minutes long) here:

And the lovely folk at the New Flash Fiction Review asked me some questions about my flash story, My Mother Was An Upright Piano, which is the title story of my second collection from 2012, and is shortly - and most thrillingly- being reprinted in an anthology, NEW MICRO — EXCEPTIONALLY SHORT FICTION (W.W. Norton & Co., 2018). Here's a taster:

TD: What gives micros their power? Language? Silence? Structure?

TH: As with any piece of great writing, this is hard to pin down, and I am an avoider of general pronouncements. I read around 1000 short and very short stories and poems, and non-fictions, every year, and I demand no less from a great piece of writing than to feel like I have been punched in the gut. Every piece that does that to me seems to do it in its own way, each writer makes it their own, which is the way it should be. I have a great love for a freshness of language, cliché turns me off, laziness of language will stop me in my tracks. Voice is what grabs me as a reader, the voice of a character or the narrator, in any piece of any length. The story itself, the plot, maybe be tiny and quiet, I never ask for enormous events to happen, there is great power in the small moments.

You can read the full interview, in which I carry on unhelpfully refusing to make grand pronouncements, here!