Interview With Local Cosy Crime Writer Helena Dixon

Interview With Local Cosy Crime Writer Helena Dixon

Helena Dixon splits her life between homes in Devon and the Black Country, UK. She is a prolific writer who has been both indie and traditionally published. Her most recent books are in the cosy crime genre, The Miss UnderHay Series set in Dartmouth, Torbay, and Exeter. Book four, Murder on the Dancefloor, was released in October, and Book Five, Murder in the Belltower is due June 2021.

Last Minute Poetry Festival News

Sheaf Poetry Festival November 2020.

News of The Sheaf Poetry Festival arrived in my in box last night.

Beginning tomorrow evening, Thursday 19th November, The Sheaf Poetry Festival kicks off with launch of the annual anthology from the MA Creative Writing Department of Sheffield Hallam Universtiy. It features the work from students, alumni and visiting writers. 

It starts at 6.30pm and is free to attend.

Sheaf Festival will be delivered online over a long weekend of digital events and workshops via YouTube Premiere.

How to Unleash Your Inner Creator and Finally Write The Book You’ve Always Wanted

I still remember the first real story I ever wrote.

I was seven or perhaps eight years old.

It was an adventure story emulating my favourite author at the time, Enid Blyton. 

Back then, adventure stories helped me escape the confusing world that I experienced as a child. 

My story was hardly literary, but it was my first experience of self-expression in words. I wrote down my wildest dreams and became lost in my imagination for days at a time. Through my first characters, I learned what it was to live the life I wished for and forget the reality of the life that I had.

Rules - Are They Made To Be Broken?

People should obey the rules. 

That seems obvious, doesn’t it? 

Especially in the middle of a pandemic. 

Who wants to be infected by someone with a severe case of: ‘Nobody’s going to tell me what to do?’ 

We all know the difference between a free spirit and selfishness.

But what about us writers, who juggle creativity and simplicity, originality, and comprehensibility? 

Are there any writing rules that you kicked against when you first picked up your literary pen?

Member News - Goodbye Sophie You Will Be Missed

Long-time member, Sophie Duffy is moving to the North of England to become a Royal Literary 
Fund Fellow at Manchester University and, although we’re all very pleased for her, Exeter Writers are sorry she’s leaving. 

How To Write a Blog Post (People Will Enjoy Reading)

Picture this scene:

A gnarly hunchback in a dark cave (office). 

Deformed hands poised over keyboard. 

The glare from a computer screen casting light on the dark circles under their eyes and shadows in the hollows of their cheeks. 

Where once a creative human full of hope and inspiration sat, a withered husk remains. His contorted expression fraught and wild with desperation.

He's stuck.

He's tormented by rejection.

He's laboured over his novels. He's laboured over his blog posts. He’s poured his heart and soul into all the words he’s ever spilled forth. 

Frantic for the world to hear his message.

But nobody does. 

Nobody cares about his posts. Or by extension his novels. 

He receives few views, and even fewer likes.

If you listen really hard. In a moment or so you’ll hear the subtle crack of his spirit breaking.

BOOK CHAT - The Motion of the Body Through Space by Lionel Shriver

Welcome to our first Book Chat! 

At Exeter Writers meetings we regularly discuss books we're reading. Not just to stay current in the world of literature professionally speaking, but because we simply adore reading as much as writing. 

This month, Dianne Bown-Wilson picked an especially interesting book.

Lionel Shriver is an American author and journalist living in the UK.  Her book The Motion of the Body Through Space was published earlier this year, 7th May, 2020.

Shriver is not afraid to use her words to bring uncomfortable things to light. She often plays devil's advocate, broaching topics that provoke hot debate.

Literary Festivals in Lockdown and Beyond

Literary Festivals in Lockdown and Beyond 

It’s fair to say 2020 has been a challenging year for the arts in general, with theatres, cinemas, concerts and other public events forced to be shut, cancelled or postponed during lockdown. 

Literary festivals are no exception and organisers have faced difficult decisions, including whether to cancel altogether or deliver events in a different format. While the Covid-19 pandemic has prevented writers and readers from gathering in the traditional way, many literary festivals have embraced the creative challenge of uniting book lovers through alternative modes. Going online is the most popular choice for literary festivals which have gone ahead.

(Re)Finding Your Writing Mojo

 (Re)Finding Your Writing Mojo

Losing your writing mojo can happen at any time, but living through a pandemic doesn’t help. Whether you are struggling to feel a sense of connection with your writing or can’t write anything at all, try these tips to rekindle your enthusiasm.

1. Take care of the basics

Taking steps to improve your sleep, nutrition and physical fitness may seem obvious, but it’s easy to lose track of the basics when you are worrying about other things. Make time for things you enjoy and keep in touch with friends. Ensuring your health (physical and mental) is as good as possible means you will be in a better position to get your writing mojo back.

Writing in Lockdown by Hayley N Jones

My original plan for this post was to explore the effects of lockdown on writing habits, refining it to a single question: has the Covid-19 pandemic improved or impaired productivity in relation to creative writing? Social media seemed to represent the issue in a very binary way, particularly towards the beginning of lockdown. There were “inspirational” posts suggesting everybody should use the extra time saved (whether from being furloughed or minimising other activities) to finally write that novel and produce masterpieces, citing the productivity of Newton and Shakespeare during plague years as encouragement. These calls to action were met by numerous writers sharing the opposite experience, pointing out the difficulties of focusing on anything when one is flooded with anxiety and uncertainty.