Going to Town


The other day, I went to town.  I mean this in an actual as well as figurative sense.

Whenever I leave my beloved mountain village to go to the Big Smoke, I like to indulge myself just a little.

My favourite haunt is a famous book shop with a whole section devoted to books on writing. (It also has a great cafe with booths that feel as though you are in a private room.)

The last thing I need is another book on writing — I have about 50 already —but there’s no harm in drooling over them, surely.

The Write-Brain Workbook

Such as this one like a bumper colouring book only with writing prompts and exercises. Or

Ten minutes a day

which is an appealing idea but I’m not sure I am committed enough. Then there’s Fiona

which opens with the idea that to write is a verb. It requires action. This makes sense.

To collect is another verb. I collect books about writing.

To browse is another verb. You see where I’m going with this, don’t you?

Collecting books about writing doesn’t make me a writer. It just makes me a collector.

If I want to be a writer, I must write.

Sigh. It’s so simple really.

By the way, I didn’t buy any of the above but it’s good to have a wish list prepared, in case anyone asks.

What writing books are on your wish list?


Sarah Thornhill

The Hawkesbury was a lovely river, wide and calm, the water dimply green, the cliffs golden in the sun and white birds roosting in the trees like so much washing. It was a sweet thing of a still morning, the river-oaks whispering and the land standing upside down in the water.

Sarah Thornhill, Kate Grenville.

Sarah Thornhill

In this sequel to The Secret River, Sarah is the youngest child of William Thornhill. As a girl, she is aware that a terrible secret underpins the apparent normality of her family life. It has something to do with her brother, Dick, cast out and unwilling to bear the family name. Sarah resolves to find out why. …