Month: November 2015

Podcast update – 5 recent discoveries

If you know me well you'll know one of my all time favourite things in the world is radio. I've long been a fan of broadcast, but in the last few years I've been getting into podcasts, those little gems of talk-based programming you can download onto your phone (or whatever device you use to interact with the world) then listen while running, or on the way to work, of fiddling about with images on Flickr. I love the intimacy of radio, the feeling of it being piped directly into my brain. I love being able to listen to voices from all over the globe, and connect with other listeners online (although it has to be said my listening is fairly US-centric, which I'd love to rectify - comment me your international recommendations, please!) Podcasts are great for dipping into - if you don't want to subscribe to a series you can…

The courage to go to dark places

Image: courtesy of Jessica Shirley A couple of years ago I wrote the first draft of a novel called He, She, It.  It's a dark book, touching on dangerous and complicated themes, but looking back at it now, I realise I didn't quite have the courage to let it be dark or dangerous enough. For example, there's one scene where my fifteen-year old protagonist encounters a predatory adult in a position of power.  Anna escapes unharmed, and tells her Mum, who acts impeccably: she immediately believes her daughter's account of events, and acts strongly to protect her. I found it very upsetting to write that scene: I was shaking as I typed, and I cried a lot afterwards. At the time, the only way I could cope with the feelings it triggered in me was by making the Mum swoop in immediately and save Anna.  I had to put an end to the…