Every now and then I’m jolted into action and realise that if I want to call myself a writer, I should do more than do laundry, cook dinner, wash the kitchen surfaces, iron pillowcases and rewax the floors. What follows are excerpts from my brain.
Have you ever stumbled upon a magazine called ‘Best’? You’ll find it in every low-grade supermarket next to the crossword puzzle books. They’re designed to sharpen the mind. ‘Best’ sets out to ruin it. Reading ‘Best’ is like having your nasty aunty Pat round for tea. It’s sixty pages of fat-shaming, miracle diets and Meghan […]
My mother has passed away. At 1.30 this morning, I woke. My husband, too. He trailed downstairs to her temporary bedroom, and I listened for the rattle of laboured breathing. Seconds later, he appeared and asked me to stay calm. Storm Dennis is due in her part of the country any time now, already raindrops ricochet […]
A frequently quoted ‘rule’ for writing is to write something every day. No matter if it’s good. No matter if it’s bad. Set yourself a window – anything from ten minutes to every waking moment – and sit in front of a screen or an empty piece of paper and write. The idea being if […]
My mother has been dying for 47 days and yet everyone who visits insists she looks better. They hover by her bedside and make impossible promises about things they’ll do together when she’s back on her feet. Sometimes she manages a smile. Sometimes I do too. We both know we’re lying. In the early years […]
Last year, around 2,300 British men were told they had testicular cancer. That’s more than six every day. The number of cases diagnosed has doubled since the mid-1970s with 70 men dying each year from the disease. 1 in 250 men will get testicular cancer. With those numbers, it’s only a matter of time before […]