Disappointing Reader Expectations and Pushkin’s ‘The Queen of Spades’

Most books about successful novel writing emphasize that above everything, the writer who wants to sell well and avoid bad reviews must at all costs respect the  tropes of a genre, and particularly avoid ‘disappointing reader expectations’. In fact, Chris Fox in his well argued and generally witty book  ‘Write to Market’ emphasizes this to … Continue reading Disappointing Reader Expectations and Pushkin’s ‘The Queen of Spades’

Paul Debreckzeny’s Criticism of Pushkin’s Robber Novella ‘Dubrovsky’

I orginally wrote this post nearly five years ago, just before I published my spoof historical highwayman romance 'Ravensdale'. I am posting it again, as I am again writing a spoof historical novel that features highwaymen, and I have never lost my admiration for this uncompleted novella of Pushkin's. At that time,  I was reading … Continue reading Paul Debreckzeny’s Criticism of Pushkin’s Robber Novella ‘Dubrovsky’

Writing Resolutions for the New Year: Why Writers Might Take a Look at That Unfinished Manuscript in the Drawer

I wonder what people’s writing resolutions for 2017 are? My personal writing resolution is to finish the sequel to ‘That Scoundrel Émile Dubois’ and then, if there is time, to get a novella out which commemorates the St Peter’s Field Massacre of 1818. I had already written the first third of that sequel in the … Continue reading Writing Resolutions for the New Year: Why Writers Might Take a Look at That Unfinished Manuscript in the Drawer