Tuesday 1 January 2008


Hi! I'm Maggie and I'll be writing here in all sections of this bog site so keep a look out!

I did intend to use this blog site as a showcase for my creative writing, using it more or less as a web-site, but it seems to have evolved, right from the word go, into something much wider.

So, my very first blog post has actually been all about music! It's an open letter to Van Morrison about his record company's recent use of a company called Web Sheriff to block all of his unofficial sites. Many of these sites contained both vintage and modern amateur 'videos' on Youtube of Van playing with his band or great legends of music like Bob Dylan and is a real loss, not only to Van Morrison fans but also to the history of music.

Obviously, Van Morrison was unmoved by my appeal but Web Sheriff did send me a lovely e-mail and I am unashamedly going to use a quote from it: '...we'd like to thank you for taking the time to write such an eloquent letter (to call it a post would be too demeaning) and, naturally, we fully respect your right to air your views...'
So, if anyone from from Web Sheriff reads this, I'd like to thank them for this favourable quote. As a relatively unknown author, I have to grab them from wherever I can.

I have also written posts about the Essaouira Gnawa and World Music Festival (with photographs), September in Italy (with photographs), The Wire, musicians such as Ky-mani Marley (with a direct link to his live performance of his father's famous song 'No woman, no cry'), Polly and Billet Deux (with photographs), Stornaway - all of whom I've seen live - plus lots, lots more. They can all be found in the posts section of this blog.

Another post that I've written, by the way, plus photographs, which is on the daftnotstupid site (run by my husband), is about a live music performance at the home of the Master Gnaoua Musician, Mahmoud Guinea, in Essaouira, Morocco, on Xmas Day 2008.

I adapted it into a newspaper travel article and sent it to the top seven broadsheets. Two wrote back saying 'thank you but no thank you', someone from The Times actually phoned me up to say thank you but no thank you, but four have still not replied so I'm hoping that this is a positive sign and am keeping my fingers crossed because it's far more interesting (I believe) than the kind of bland travel writing that focuses on the surface appearance of a place and nothing more. (Since writing this, we've had another Xmas so it looks like they were all binned.)

At present, I'm trying to find a literary agent because I've just completed my first fiction novel, Cyprus Blues, and naturally wish to have it published. I think it's a 'bloody good read' but, of course, I may be slightly biased. Today I sent the obligatory introductory letter, synopsis and 1st 3 chapters to three more agents. (I've stopped including a SAE for confirmation of receipt because either I forget to actually put stamps on (!) or agents don't use them. And I've also stop putting my work into nice, tidy plastic covers because most don't come back. Nor, I should add, do most of my paper clips.)

Just to help you navigate this blog site, because, natuarally, I'd like you to read it all (!), here is a brief description of each section:-
* biography
* commentary on novels I have recently read
* journalistic pieces I have written
* short stories I have had published
* present writing work
* six word memoirs - work in progress
* my great graffiti finds (usually from the walls of ladies' toilets) -work in progress
* pearls of wisdom - work in progress
* photographs - work in progress
* links
* blog posts.


Time to start the new novel - Winchester Blues.

I hope you enjoy the insights into the life/thinking of a journalist/author/eccentric 1960's dolly-bird and please feel free to leave comments.

P.S. Since writing this, I have given up my search for an agent and intend the publish CYPRUS BLUES as an e-book.


Anonymous said...

Hi! Maggie.I like the sound of your novel. When you get it published let me know where I can get a copy. It is good to hear of new writers on the scene :)

Anonymous said...

ABOUT FAMAGUSTA,....how can we communicate?

makeupzoe said...

Hiya Maggie,

Archie is sooooo cute! my dog buried her slobbery bone in my duvet today, yum!? I found it when I came back from training in London!

I love your site! Any chance your murder mystery in winch could involve a makeup artist going back to your fictional school to kill her old german teacher with an eyeshadow brush? I didn't like school much, esp German (can you tell why!!!) Let me know when I can read it!

Speak soon,
Zoe (makeup artist from toni&guy winch)