12 Books in 12 Months

writing books and blogging about it



How Not To Network

Image by Doug Savage (

If you want to make it in a creative industry, I am told, you have to network.

Gone are the days of the reclusive author who is read but not seen; your Salingers, Pynchons and Becketts.  Writers must put themselves out there if they want support for their output, because contacts in the right places get you paid work.  I’ve even read in several places that if you want to be a hack or write comedy, you should find out where your favourite journalists, editors or producers drink then hang around the same pub till you get chatting.  Because that’s not creepy or weird, especially for those of us commuting from Edinburgh to London…

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How to write blog comments

On Monday I talked about blog comments – more specifically the fact that even when I enjoy reading something I don’t necessarily leave a message to say so.

I mentioned this is because if I was going to say something I’d want it to add value to the discussion, or at the very make me appear pithy / wise / hilarious to other readers…. But also conceded that I love getting comments on my blog regardless of what they say, because the important thing is someone stayed long enough to read an entire post. People often get here by accident – sometimes looking for Glempy, Sandra, or Michelle; other times because some of my tags are a bit facetious.

Still, I’m rarely inundated with chat in the comments section and I reckon this is partly down to the fact that lurking readers do the same thing as me – read (or skim), go ‘I see. Well, I have nothing to add,’ and move on.  But help is at hand!  From now on you will always have something to add – just choose from one of my top ten pithy and insightful blog comments*, listed below. Copying and pasting has never made a blogger feel so validated.

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Opportunities for Writers

Now that I’ve written the bare bones of twelve books, every publisher and their granny have announced their intention to accept manuscript submissions from un-agented newbies.  Well, maybe not all of them.  But a few. 

image via

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Time for Reflection

“How do you feel, now that it’s nearly over?”

Fraudulent, I think, but I don’t say that.  I smile sheepishly and go with something vague like “oh, I haven’t really got that far yet… Ask me in January.”

Eagle-eyed readers might have noticed that it’s January now, so I suppose I’ll have a go at answering that question from the perspective of four days hindsight.

I still feel a little bit fraudulent.

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Journalists Wanted

Are you a journalist?  Have you ever known or worked with journalists?

Then I need your help.

My sixth book this year is about the staff of a recently shut down local newspaper deciding to start up a zeitgeisty current affairs stroke gossip website, probably called something like ‘Michty!’ (the genre for this one is Scottish), and getting it terribly wrong.  With hilarious consequences, of course.

I am hoping to gather some anecdotal research, which is where you come in.

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