Announcing the Miss Clara Vale Mysteries – my new series with Embla Books

Louise Brooks – if someone were to play Miss Clara Vale in a moving picture it would be Miss Louise Brooks!

Well this is an auspicious day. Not only is it my birthday and I’m going to see the Mousetrap this evening as my present, but my new series with Embla Books (an imprint of Bonnier Books UK) has been announced in The Bookseller! The Miss Clara Vale Mysteries, about a lady science graduate who inherits a detective agency in Newcastle upon Tyne, will be released this September. There are three under contract, so far, the first is ‘The Picture House Murders’, set in the summer of 1929. So fans of Poppy Denby (and hopefully many more new fans) prepare yourselves for more mysterious Golden Age delights!

Writing is a Marathon

Many students on my writing courses think that only three rewrites of a piece of work are necessary: the first draft which gets the story down, the second draft which then tidies and tightens the story then the third draft which is essentially an edit. However, most professional writers know that if you can get away with three drafts, you’re lucky!

I’m currently working on the seventh draft of my play Marathon. This is not because I don’t know when to stop – I thought I had ‘cracked’ it with draft six – but after feedback from a theatre group at a staged reading I realised the story of my heroine Stamata Revithi needed to start earlier and take a slightly different direction.

I know this seventh rewrite will not be the last as now that the story is being reshaped it will need further work. However, I’m encouraged to keep going with it as there is talk that it might actually get presented on the day the Olympic Torch passes through the North East of England.

Writing is a marathon, not a sprint.

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