the crashed motorcyclist test

memories

the crashed motorcyclist test

When I learnt to drive, my dad taught me, in our slightly rusty Peugeot 304. Having moved back to the area where I grew up, I regularly drive along the road where I had my first ever driving lesson, so I’m often reminded of it.…

writing and writing

stocktakingreview

writing and writing

It's been a strange summer. It can't be the first year I haven't had a holiday, but it's the first year that a global pandemic has forced me to cancel my holiday and stay at home for month after month.…

the end is nigh

imagequotationstocktaking

the end is nigh

The final hand-in deadline for my MA course is at the start of September, and effectively that will end my two years as a mature student. I enjoyed the classes, the cameraderie with classmates, and the access to university facilities,…

yonder all before us

storyyorkshire

yonder all before us

Time and space are important issues in the novel I’m writing. It’s mostly set in the early 80s, because there were a lot of things I remember that I wanted to write about. That’s not a problem at all.…

where the story began

memoriesstory

where the story began

When I started my MA course in Creative Writing, I told a few people the story of how I started writing. I had an inspirational teacher at the age of 9, that's the shortest version.…

interstitial

stocktakingnews

interstitial

Interstitial spaces are defined by what they are between. They are non-places, between other, proper places. Here is one. between two walls (Hatton Gallery, Newcastle)In web design, an interstitial meant a “please wait” screen displayed to deter the user…

the map’s in your soul

mapsmemoriesquotation

the map’s in your soul

I found this quotation about novel-writing from E.L. Doctorow and immediately liked it. It reminded me of a car journey I once made, when I was a PhD student. I needed to return to Newcastle, but there was a very heavy fog; I didn't realise how heavy, until I got out of town…

map research

changemaps

map research

I've written about my contributions to OpenStreetMap before. Surveying the ever-changing Newcastle Helix site for OSM, I noticed that part of Corporation Street no longer exists on the ground, bulldozed to make way for a new building that is just being started…