Daily Archives: November 17, 2016

Author Interview – Heidi Swain

Author Interview – Heidi Swain

To get us into the festive spirit. What? Did I hear “Bah Humbug”?

Rachel Dove - Author


Hello Rachel. Thank you so much for inviting me to visit your wonderful blog and on today of all days. I’m hugely excited as my third novel, Mince Pies and Mistletoe at The Christmas Market is out today and I can’t wait to go and see it sitting on the festive shelves!

Q1. Care to tell us a little about your path to publication so far?

I’ve written forever (or so it seems), but the actual path that led me to publication once I decided to take my writing seriously has been an absolute whirlwind.

My debut novel, The Cherry Tree Café, was selected by the wonderful Books and The City team at Simon and Schuster following their #oneday open submission day in 2014 and it was published in June 2015. There have been two more novels since then, Summer at Skylark Farm (July 2016) and Mince Pies and Mistletoe…

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Posted by on November 17, 2016 in writing


Today’s online writing groups’ poetry and story exercises: 17th Nov 2016

*** If you enjoy these prompts, or are looking to improve your writing or submit a manuscript, do take a look at my seven online courses… six currently half price (coupon codes on the online courses page) and one FREE!, and / or my Writer’s Block Workbooks… my best-selling eBooks – now available in eBook and paperback format!

Every weekday I post a set of poetry prompts on and a set of story prompts on the scriptnovel and short story blogs. As you’ll see by the heading numbers, you may have missed a few but the links are listed on the relevant group’s Exercises page so you can always find them there. So here are your poetry and short story exercises…

Poetry Writing Exercises 1001: Thursday 17th November

Here are your four poetry exercises for today. If you enjoy these prompts, do take a look at my online courses… six are currently half price (when using the coupon codes on my main blog’s online courses page) and another is FREE!

Time yourself for 15 minutes per exercise, having a break in between each one or move on to the next.  When you’ve finished, do pop over to this blog’s Facebook Group and let everyone know how you got on.

1001-seattle-science-centre-976178Below are the four – you can do them in any order.

  1. Keywords: fitter, hear, lucky, glimpse, deprived
  2. Random: one in two people
  3. Picture: what does this inspire?
  4. Thursday Title: The National Average

Have fun, and if you would like to, do paste your writing in the comment boxes below so we can see how you got on! Remember though that it counts as being published so don’t post anything that you would want to submit elsewhere (where they require unpublished material).

See below for explanations of the prompts, they do vary…

  • Sentence starts = what it says on the tin. You can use it at the beginning of the poem or include it later, and being poetry it doesn’t have to be exact – just be inspired by it.
  • Keywords = the words have to appear in the poem but can be in any order and can be lengthened (e.g. clap to clapping).
  • Single-word prompt = sometimes all it takes is one word to spawn an idea. Sometimes it easy, sometimes hard but invariably fun.
  • Mixed bag = an object, a location, a colour.
  • Picture prompts = nothing other than a picture. What does it conjure up?
  • Title = The title for your piece.
  • Haiku poem= 5 syllables, 7 syllables, 5 syllables
  • Random = whatever takes my fancy!


Story Writing Exercises 1005: Thursday 17 November

Here are your four story exercises for today. If you enjoy these prompts (or are looking to improve your writing or submit a manuscript), do take a look at my online courses… six are currently half price (when using coupon codes) and the other is FREE!

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Posted by on November 17, 2016 in ideas, novels, poetry, short stories, writing


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KAI Presents… Christoph Fischer!

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Source: KAI Presents… Christoph Fischer!

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Posted by on November 17, 2016 in writing