major award winning Children's Author

Month: August 2012

Pencil Tips #6: Everyone’s a critic

As a teenager I did a degree in ‘creative advertising’, a large part of which comprised having my work deliberately torn to shreds to harden me for the career that lay ahead. I didn’t enjoy it all that much, but I’m glad I put myself […]

Pencil Tips#5: Gaze

Take time to gaze. You might just let your eyes fall out of focus and see nothing, or you might observe something inconsequential yet fascinating (we’re writers; nothing is inconsequential, right?!). It’s vital to allow yourself some zoning-out time. It’s not laziness. Observations fuel your […]

Pencil Tips #4: Leave the room

Stuck mid-writing? Whatever you do, don’t just sit there staring at the blinking cursor. Get up and walk around. You don’t have to down tools entirely, especially if you’re pushed for time; just going to use the bathroom or making a cup of tea can help your brain switch into problem solving mode.

Change your scene, breathe differently, move, look at stuff – even if you end up looking through it. Give your brain a chance to unstick itself. Some of my best ever EUREKA moments have come from being stuck and making a cuppa. Keep thinking about your writing, though – don’t get distracted or you’ll end up doing the housework or watching TV. What a total waste of time when you could be working on the next big thing, right?

Pencil Tips #3: Write sideways, think sideways

This one might sound silly, but when it comes to writing fiction, silliness is good. If you’re feeling stuck, particularly when coming up with ideas, turn your writing pad around and write through the ruled lines. This works even if you don’t use lined paper […]

Pencil Tips #2: Pacing a picture book

I find the pacing of stories is kind of intuitive these days. Hang on. Is that really what I mean? I’m not sure – maybe it’s just that I do all the right things now without even thinking. It comes from reading (and re-reading) an […]