"I didn't want people to read in the same way they might eat five portions of fruit and vegetables every day, but because I wanted them to know the mind-expanding privilege of walking a mile in someone else's shoes." Cathy Rentzenbrink
June 2015
Adventures in improvising

Adventures in improvising

The single rule in contemporary comic improv sketches, is, Yes, and… If your partner starts a sketch saying, Hey, I just met a green-skinned alien!, you must build on that premise; for example play the skincare guru and ask, Dry, normal, or oily? To scoff and say You’re nuts! There’s no such thing! is to...
Sign here

Sign here

Ricky Gervais, Charles Dickens and Washington Irving probably don’t have much in common except for their mutual loathing of autograph hunters, or as they are described in the US autograph hounds. In his stand-up tour Science, Gervais said they are the “bane of my life”, Dickens reportedly referred to them as a “nuisance” and Irving...
It's all about you

It’s all about you

Kate Griffin won the 2012 Faber/Stylist Magazine Crime Fiction writing competition. Her entry was the basis for her debut novel Kitty Peck and the Music Hall Murders, shortlisted for the 2014 CWA Endeavour Historical Dagger. The second in the series, Kitty Peck and the Child of Ill Fortune, is published by Faber & Faber on...
All-seeing I

All-seeing I

Omniscient narrators are an endangered species. Once they flourished, roaming freely over the lush grasslands of 19th-century fiction. Now, when I look at my bookshelves, it seems that less than 10% of contemporary fiction is narrated omnisciently. A simple experiment: take a look at your own shelves and ask yourself who’s doing the talking. Count...
The day the music died

The day the music died

When Tamsin Jarvis was twelve, she saw her father kissing another woman. The whole family was up in Manchester to hear him conduct a celebration of British music at the Bridgewater Hall. It was a treat, at the end of the concert, for Tamsin to go to his dressing room all by herself. Her mother...
Capturing the silence

Capturing the silence

I never deliberately set out to write a silent character. I know it sounds like a writerly cliché – “they just walked into my head like that”, and so on – but in Lily’s case it’s completely true. That’s just the way she was, and it never seemed particularly unusual to me. So when I...