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Talking about my writing

I was at a very enjoyable meeting of the QMUL Literary Society.  It was held in an upstairs room at the New Globe pub in Mile End.  I went through how I set about writing science fiction for children some of the techniques I use.  For example, I take care to use more senses than sight.  It’s not enough to say what things look like to the characters; readers want to know what they sound like, smell like, feel like, or even taste like.  The central characters have to have a ‘vector,’ making progress through the book and developing in some way to overcome inadequacies or weaknesses.

Children are less tolerant of lengthy descriptions than were their Victorian counterparts.  Today they prefer it done through dialogue.  I also explained how I never dumb down the language.  If young readers come across an unfamiliar word, let them look it up and have the pleasure of learning something.  It’s never been easier to do that.

Later on in the meeting one of my editors for “Think Tank” joined us, so the talk broadened into some of my other writing.  Great fun.

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