Kathleen McGurl - On settings

This week’s guest in the writers abroad series, Kathleen McGurl, actually lives in Christchurch, England but when pandemics allow she spends a lot of time travelling in Europe with her husband in their motorhome, especially France and Spain. She has written ten dual timeline novels, set in England, France and Ireland, and is constantly inspired […]

Vanessa Couchman – The other South of France

Continuing the writers abroad series, this week it features Vanessa Couchman whom I met at a literary festival here in France. Vanessa writes historical novels and short stories set in France or on the Mediterranean island of Corsica. Quirky true stories often find their way into her fiction, and she likes nothing more than pottering […]

Tracey Warr – Writing medieval fiction in southern France

Photo by Sara Perry

Continuing our series about English-speaking writers based in Europe and their ‘terroir’ – the place where they live. How does it affect their writing? This week, it’s Tracey Warr who lives near Albi in southern France.

She has published five novels set in early medieval Europe. Her first […]

Masking up – How to make a fabric mask

Quite a number of people have asked my about how I made the fabric masks for our family. In late April, I dug out my trusty Singer sewing machine and joined a community sewing project run by my local council here in France.

After producing 100 masks for them from pre-cut materials to Lille University […]

Do writers live in permanent lockdown?

Writers spend much of their lives in lockdown. I don’t mean since March, but all the time; about 60-65% in my case.

But what really goes on in the head of that person hunched over a computer grunting and tapping away at their latest masterpiece? Are they dreaming up new plots, imagining engaging or repelling […]