I’ve been saying this for ages. That too many kids leaving school in the last few years do not have a sufficient level of literacy. But I’ve been digging a bit and the news, when you look for it, is shocking, if not entirely surprising. A study by the University of Sheffield has shown that almost a fifth of teenagers between the ages of 16 and 19 have a reading age at or even below that expected of an eleven-year-old. Continue reading
Last weekend, the World Fantasy Convention was in Brighton. I’d known about this since earlier in the year, and I tweeted the friend of Plot Bunnies, first-ever Q&A victim, Joanne Harris, to ask if we could perhaps meet up while she was in town. Yes, she said, that would be lovely. She asked me to email her nearer the time. (We’d been corresponding via Twitter & re Plot Bunnies for a while, by this time.)
So, another NaNoWriMo is over, and Laz and I managed to write 150,000 between us, in the space of 30 days. Added to that, Alex, one of my kung fu brothers, also participated, and he managed 50,000, too. Between the three of us, then, we have produced 200,000 words in a single month.
I know. It’s been a little while since you last heard from me in any great detail. Some may count that a blessing. Anyway, the main reason is that so much has been going on and I’ve hardly known what to write about because by the time I sit down of an evening, I’m often so knackered that all I want to do is read a book.
I found out today that one of my favourite writers, Michèle Roberts, has a new book coming out next month. This is excellent news. It always seems like years between Michèle Roberts books, but her last one, Mud, was published only two years ago. Continue reading
I’ve finished two books this evening. One I was reading, and one I was writing.
It’s a strange feeling when you finish the first draft of a novel you’ve been writing. It’s almost impossible to describe, but I’ll give it a go. Continue reading