Blog: Mel's Muse

Showing posts categorised as 'Creative Writing'

Writing The Rights & Wrongs Of Life

Are you as fed up with the negative concept of society as I am? Every day we’re bombarded with news about failing governments, education, health and housing services, marriages, families and kids – and that’s without all the heartbreak of drug and alcohol abuse, and 3 million children starving to...

Posted at 12:44pm on 31st May 2023

Who Inspired You To Be You?

Who inspired you to be who you are? And how did that come about? Being a bestselling author, this is a question I've often been asked. But whether or not you're a writer, secretary, nurse, or whatever, this is a question, and answer, that could apply to any and all.


Posted at 15:24pm on 22nd April 2023

Persistence Pays

Have you ever had a book proposal turned down? You've slogged away, and you felt sure you'd done a good job - then this. I'm sure most of us will have been through many situations like this. It's pretty devastating isn't it? But it shouldn't be...

Posted at 02:49am on 25th January 2020

The Battle Of Conflict - My Writers' Group's Take On Story


The main focus of our meeting this morning - midst laughter and chat - was the final construction and distribution of the booklet we have put together as a group. Titled Battle, and told in narrative, poetic and comic form, the theme confronts some of...

Posted at 11:21am on 23rd October 2019

Creative Writing Workshop: Characteristic Conflict

In the last Creative Writing Workshop, we looked at the way in which we can go about Creating Credible Characters. Now I'm going to show you how you can bring creativity to the way you construct conflict. This is crucial when it comes to writing fiction and memoir...

Posted at 10:43am on 3rd August 2019

Creative Writing Workshop: Creating Credible Characters

When we looked at the issue of Crafting Character in the last Creative Writing Workshop, I said that Characters - whether in fiction or true-life stories - need:

Credibility - to be true to life Creativity - in the way they respond to conflict Complexity - the depth which makes them three dimensional


Posted at 04:22am on 27th July 2019

Creative Writing Workshop: Crafting Character

Today we're going to look at Crafting Character, and its importance in terms of plot and theme. This was the topic of the previous post in this series - the way in which The Riverbed of Theme runs through the narrative of a story, be it fictional or memoir....

Posted at 04:18am on 26th July 2019

Creative Writing Workshop: The Riverbed Of Theme

We began this Creative Writing Workshop by asking Are You On The Right Track? We then moved on to think about the necessity of Digging Deep for Plots. I trust you found the list of prompts helpful - i.e. considering a modern take on a Bible story or...

Posted at 06:28am on 20th July 2019

Creative Writing Workshop: Digging Deep For Plots

In the Introduction of this Creative Writing Workshop, I asked the question, Are You On the Right Track? There was nothing flippant about this. Before you begin to write your book, there are questions to be asked. And answered!

The content of this, and future tutorials, will...

Posted at 08:38am on 30th March 2019

Creative Writing Workshop Introduction - Are You On The Right Track?

Right, let's see. Are you on the right track? Is it that you want to write a book but don't know where to start? Or that you've already written your book, but don't know how to get it published?

From past experience, over many decades, I think I...

Posted at 07:42am on 30th March 2019

What Makes A Writer Write?

I was reading a blog post on Women Writers, Women’s Books which posed the query, Do you have to suffer to write?

It’s a valid and interesting question.


I attended a World Book Night event yesterday, at which Lesley Pearse, bestselling novelist, was speaking.  She had us...

Posted at 07:39am on 24th April 2016

My Writers' Group Feedback

We meet every other month and, midst this morning's mince pies and chocolate cake, we spent the first few minutes sharing news.
David Scott is to be congratulated for having his memoir, Death by a Thousand Clots reviewed in Devon Life, second only to Michael Morpurgo’s latest book.

Roger Steer,...

Posted at 11:11am on 25th November 2015

Creative Writing: Book Launch & Signing For Time To Shine

Not the best of photographs, but this is me telling my audience, at my Book Launch, yesterday, about my creative writing journey.  My love of books began at the age of five, when my father used to read my favourite bedtime story, Oscar Wilde's The Selfish Giant from the leather-bound...

Posted at 14:59pm on 29th November 2014

What Is Your Author & Book Brand?

Have you ever thought, as a reader, about what attracts you to certain books, or particular authors?  What makes you go for one rather than another?  Is it the book cover?  The price of the product?  The publisher’s marketing ploy?  The author’s nationality?

Somehow, I doubt it.  Almost certainly, it will...

Posted at 02:03am on 21st November 2014

Time To Shine - Another Excerpt From My New Psycological Mystery

Josh was still in his pjs, lying on his bed playing some computer game or other on his cell phone when Carl went to tell him the good news.  The boy seemed strangely lethargic.  Hardly surprising, Carl supposed, given the state of the room - a stinking fug of yesterday's...

Posted at 07:40am on 15th November 2014

Writing Defines Who I Am, Not What I Do!

When Fay Sampson, an author I’ve known and admired for many years, asked me to take part in a blog tour, naturally I was delighted to accept. When I heard that Donna Fletcher Crow - another author whose work I love to read - had participated -  that clinched it.  Both have...

Posted at 00:31am on 12th May 2014

Could I Really Be An Author?

Self-published novels and indie authors abound these days.  In another guest blog - while I am in the throes of moving house - I invite you to take a look at how one new writer launched his debut novel in an innovative way, and began to realise that he is,...
Posted at 09:02am on 26th June 2012

Driven To Distraction: Writing And Publishing A Book

Another guest blog, this time from a second Facebook friend and ACW member, Claire Dunn.   And yet again, this is a story of grit and determination: an inspiration to any aspiring author.   Dogged with dyslexia, Claire might well have given up on her dream of writing and publishing a book. ...
Posted at 12:56pm on 7th June 2012

How To Be A Writer Of Christian Fiction Books

Are you an established writer or aspiring author who is also a Christian?  Is there a novel you want to write (or have written) for which you are unable to find a publisher?  Do you enjoy reading mainstream fiction but find that Christian fiction books leave you cold?  How does...

Posted at 15:50pm on 24th June 2011

Breaking Writers Block - Two Tips

Revised: May 2011

There's no doubt about it, marketing a new book plays havoc with your writing schedule.  I told myself, when my novel, A Painful Post Mortem, hit the bookshops, that I'd give my undivided attention to book signings, speaking engagements, writing and blogging until - well, until the end...

Posted at 11:32am on 2nd May 2011

Creative Writing & A God-like Or Omniscient Point Of View

Last week I wrote an article about the importance of Point of View (POV) if you're planning on writing and publishing a book, and a reader took me up on what I'd said.  An aspiring author, he is in the process of writing his first book, he said, and he's...

Posted at 12:02pm on 15th January 2011

Characters & Point Of View: It's All In The Mind

My husband, who is a keen cook, has a copy of one of Nigel Slater's books, Simple Suppers.  The recipes produce good, nutritious meals.  I have to confess, however, to a slightly queasiness when it comes to watching the celebrity chef on TV.  Something, I think, to do with what...

Posted at 17:40pm on 7th January 2011

Understanding The Drama Triangle In Personal Relationships & Fictional Characters

The theory of transactional analysis is a subject of never-ending fascination - both to those who find themselves participating in the Drama Triangle, and to aspiring authors involved in writing and publishing a book! Last week I met up with the friend of a friend and, during the course of...

Posted at 11:54am on 25th August 2010

One Stop Shop For Aspiring Authors & Published Writers?

Whether you are an aspiring author or an established, published writer, you will need to undertake research, from time to time, in order to provide material for the books or articles you are writing. Sometimes the research material you need may be factual; sometimes you may want to understand the emotional response to a given...

Posted at 12:04pm on 17th August 2010

Misery Memoir Genre: Do Grim Novels Dominate Book Market?

As an author I am, naturally, interested in the book market. Consequently, when I was shown a newspaper article a few months ago by a friend, about the continuing proliferation of misery memoir metamorphosing into a novel, I read it, avidly.


The misery memoir genre came to prominence in the...

Posted at 15:41pm on 14th July 2010

Develop Plot Ideas: A Combination Of Negative Personality Traits

My posts, in the last few days, have covered the way in which an aspiring author can use a combination of plot ideas to develop characterisation. For the purposes of demonstrating this aspect of creative writing, I’ve used a classical story taken from the Bible: the tale of Samson and Delilah. Since the entire...

Posted at 11:28am on 21st June 2010

Developing Plot Ideas To Show Characterisation

I suggested, last week, that creative writing - that is writing a novel – requires an understanding of human nature. So where is an author to turn for such material? How can your book have that ring of authenticity whilst maintaining a page turning quality?

Any well-known, classical, story may be used as the...

Posted at 10:58am on 16th June 2010

Creative Writing Plot Ideas: Dealing With Manipulative People

Whether you’re looking for new creative writing plot ideas, characters for your novel, or how to deal with negative personality traits in real life, there’s plenty of material to be found in this old story about Samson and Delilah. Tom Jones song must, surely, have made her one of the best known bad girls...

Posted at 18:11pm on 11th June 2010

If You Can (write) Do; If You Can't, Teach!

I came across an article, recently, which stated that creative writing courses for aspiring authors are a ‘racket’ - and I wondered what you think?


The author of the post pointed out that among hundreds of writing tips offered by dozens of authors, not one suggested taking a...

Posted at 11:05am on 9th March 2010

Creating Character Led Conflict In Your Novel

Last month I began what turned out to be a series about Transactional Analysis. It was what I call a combi-article: one designed to help real people with real needs, but also to inform the creative writing of authors of fiction. Titled Conflict Resolution: Relationship Psychology – And Creating Fictional Characters, my intention was...

Posted at 15:09pm on 8th February 2010

The Drama Triangle & The Games People Play

I looked, a couple of days ago, at Transactional Analysis – the Drama Triangle in particular:

First as a means of conflict resolution for those experiencing problems with their personal relationships. And second – for writers and aspiring authors – as an innovative way of creating fictional characters. THE GAMES PEOPLE PLAY

The theory of transactional analysis...

Posted at 14:30pm on 11th January 2010

How To Write Description In A Novel: Describing Location

Revised: 19th September, 2010

When you read a novel, you are being invited to inhabit an imaginary world: a fictional place, in which fictional characters live, and move, and have their being. If good descriptive writing is used, their experiences become yours, too, for the duration of the book. But because the medium is...

Posted at 17:37pm on 9th September 2009

Creative Writing Tips And The Definition Of Denouement

This article has been revised & updated on: 6th September, 2010.
Photo: Looking back down to the end of the funicular railway at the sea below!

I expect many of you, as an aspiring author, will know that a novel has a beginning, a middle and an end. That’s pretty obvious, I would have thought. But...

Posted at 22:56pm on 5th May 2009

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