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Reflections of a working writer and reader



Posts added in April 2006

The Monster of Florence II

A few days ago I retold the story of two journalists, one American and one Italian, and their fight against the police authorities in Italy. Douglas Preston, the American journalist, wrote to me yesterday with the following supplementary information: This morning, unexpectedly, an independent three-judge panel annulled the imprisonment of the Italian journalist Mario Spezi […]

The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada

Ranch hand Pete Perkins (Tommy Lee Jones) sets out to fulfil the promise to his recently deceased best friend by burying him in his home town in Mexico. The film is directed by Tommy Lee Jones and has been acclaimed by most critics. I didn’t think it was a good film, but it is a […]

The Deputy Prime Minister

John Prescott, Tony Blair’s deputy, has admitted to a two-year affair with one of his secretaries. He says he regrets it. We have had Mr Prescott and his friends for a lot longer than two-years, and we regret that. If ever proof were needed that power is the ultimate aphrodisiac . . .

Writing The Meanest Flood

The Meanest Flood is the sixth novel in the Sam Turner Series and was born out of a cocktail of ideas. The main aim when I began the narrative was to get Sam and Geordie away from York. To give them an outing away from their usual surroundings. This came from a preoccupation with the […]


According to the Oxford English Dictionary, a McJob is a job that’s low-paid and offers little opportunity to get ahead. An unstimulating, low-paid job with few prospects, esp. one created by the expansion of the service sector. McDonald’s isn’t happy about that dictionary definition and has publicly complained that it isn’t fair to the company. […]