Writing round the table

Helsinki’s poetry moon festival, Runokuu, is in the last week of August. I spent it with a dozen colleagues, translating Finnish poems and listening to some of the poets. That was the perfect way to mark ten years of living in Finland. As I’d hoped, the poetry translation workshop made me think hard about aContinue reading “Writing round the table”

Pitch your book

You have a great idea for a book, you’ve begun writing it, you’re sure your readers will appreciate it. You only have to convince a publisher. Where on earth do you start? I’m going to talk about non-fiction here, particularly about creative non-fiction. That means bringing ideas out of academia to a wider readership. I’llContinue reading “Pitch your book”

Rhetoric for Writers

Facilitating writing retreats is a bit like being a yoga teacher. I was remembered this at my last retreat. At the end of our first day, one participant said “I feel tired, but in a good way, like after a great yoga class.” Which is all you could hope for. But Like yoga teachers, writingContinue reading “Rhetoric for Writers”

How plain is your English?

Clear writing has clear results. And I love helping writers say exactly what they mean so readers can understand. But I was sure I could write better myself. Then I started mentoring someone who specialized in plain English and I wanted to learn more. If you’re interested in it, too, do the CIEP Plain EnglishContinue reading “How plain is your English?”

New year, new skill: copywriting

In a “normal” year – remember those? – I would go to Helsinki about once a month and abroad about every other month to meet colleagues and authors. Not doing this has been an enormous loss, professionally but above all personally. But it’s been good for my carbon footprint, and in 2020 I had timeContinue reading “New year, new skill: copywriting”

Unravelling Unconscious Bias

Check your privilege is easy to say, but are you doing it? When you’re a queer immigrant woman like me you can get complacent, until you – I – remember that you’re a white, middle class “native speaker” of the language everyone feels they have to communicate in, which gives you power. To put itContinue reading “Unravelling Unconscious Bias”