Writing Contemporary Scottish Fiction

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London, baby!

London, baby!

Samuel Johnson told us, “When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life.”  He went on to say that the city has “all that life can afford” and this is as true today as it was then.  While the London Johnson wrote Continue reading

When You Are Well

When You Are Well

When you are well I will sit down and tell Of the time that I spent In my own selfish hell Of the days that I sat With your fingers in mine In the hope you would squeeze me Or give me a sign Oh, Continue reading

Poetry and Prizes

Poetry and Prizes

We live in exciting times! I am thrilled to announce that I have won a prize. And it’s for poetry. Now let me be clear. I am not a poet. I have had one poem published in The Eildon Tree, a Scottish creative writing magazine. Continue reading

Ordeal by Tapas

Ordeal by Tapas

I have a confession to make. I can’t stand tapas. Those little dishes of food placed in the centre of a table for a party to share. I really can’t see the point. Yes, I hear you. I don’t know what I’m missing. Actually I Continue reading

The Dog’s in Charge

The Dog’s in Charge

I seem to have acquired a dog and I’m not quite sure how it happened. Allow me to reassure you. I have not taken in a stray or lured away a neighbour’s pet with doggy treats. Rather, it is the work of my third-born. And, Continue reading

Dundee’s Crime Cafe

Dundee’s Crime Cafe

Dundee is my home town and there is no doubt that its stock is rising. When I was growing up, it was infamous for controversial planning deals and hideous 1970s architecture. But there was no arguing with its situation, the city fanning down from the Continue reading

OF CRIME AND CRIMINALS

OF CRIME AND CRIMINALS

I am a keen reader of crime fiction, particularly series crime. I enjoy returning to the same cast of characters as they endeavour to solve a variety of crimes, while fielding the personal and family issues that we all recognise in our own lives.   Continue reading

IN PRAISE OF ANTHEMS

IN PRAISE OF ANTHEMS

I am a fan of the Scottish Rugby Team. And they don’t make it easy, believe me.   But, this week-end, they made me proud to be a Scot. The annual, Calcutta Cup, played between Scotland and England, as part of the Six Nations Championship Continue reading

DAHLIAS vs CHRYSANTHEMUMS

DAHLIAS vs CHRYSANTHEMUMS

My father grew dahlias and chrysanthemums.   He didn’t just grow them. He showed them, by which I mean he entered competitions.   Always a keen gardener, he announced one evening that he was going out to see a man called Tom.   Tom, I Continue reading

IT’S PIANO TIME

IT’S PIANO TIME

In a former life, I was a pianist.   I started young, as a ballet accompanist when I was just thirteen, often playing in gloves to combat the temperatures in the barely-heated rooms. It was good money and far easier than standing behind a shop Continue reading