Most mornings after breakfast, I take a walk on the land surrounding my home on the coastal fringes of the northern Highlands. Usually alone, I find it an opportunity for contemplation, breathing fresh air and for appreciation of the scenery. When I am working on a novel, undistracted by everyday activities and trivialities, ideas can… Continue reading Walking
At noon, on Monday 9th September, after a gap of thirty-eight years, I will be re-entering full-time education as I embark on a four-year honours degree course in Creative Writing with the University of the Highlands and Islands. As a child, I had eight “first days” at school to endure as the family moved from… Continue reading First Day of School
Long before I finished Nutters, I was pondering which novel to write next. I always have several possibilities floating in the topographic oceans of my mind, with others bubbling to the surface on a regular basis, but more like breaching whales than farts in the bath. I am happy to write short stories now and… Continue reading What Next?
There is no set pattern to my daily activities, but rather a flexible framework dictated by circumstances, mood, weather and other variables. Usually I get up, feed the cats, make tea, feed the chickens and then check emails. After breakfast I like to go for a walk. There is a small hill nearby, which offers… Continue reading My Kind of Day
Sticking to one style of poetry does not come naturally to me, so I have neither adopted nor cultivated one. Each poem is written for different reasons. With the exception of Tanka (a form of Japanese poetry requiring a particular structure), I am generally motivated to write poems inspired by my emotions, not usually happy… Continue reading Poems
One of the most common questions writers are asked is “Where do you get your inspiration from?” For me, this is difficult to answer because the ocean in which my mind swims, and sometimes flounders, is so vast that it is hard to pin down individual waves of imagination or creativity. Ideas can pop into… Continue reading Inspiration
I live on an organic woodland smallholding in the north of Scotland with my wife, son, daughter-in-law, chickens and cats. When I am not writing, I design and make hand carved wooden jewellery (Woodland Treasures), read a lot, watch films, grow fruit and vegetables, plant trees and generally like to muck about outside. "Echoes of… Continue reading Welcome!