That moment where you see a really bad photo of yourself and think – oh my God do I really look that old/ugly/desiccated/ and the answer is a resounding, ego shattering ‘YES.’
In the opening scene of the movie Downfall, Bruno Ganz as Hitler is shown being kind to Traudl Junge, his new and terrified secretary. It's a brilliant scene, reminding us that Hitler the mass murdering monster was also a human being, capable of kindness. If Donald Trump was a character, a script editor would call … Continue reading The liberal elite that Republicans are always bitching about will have no say in the US government over the next four years. Trump won on fear and loathing. You wanted it – you got it.
To my students. I know how you feel when your work is judged This academic year I’m teaching the new Open University MA in Creative Writing. I’m also doing some critical reading of the script materials. And like thousands of other writers, I’m trying to get my own work off the ground. When I wear … Continue reading I know how you feel when your work is judged
I was a waitress once, in an Islington Brasserie called Uppers. This was in the early eighties and the only half decent restaurant review plastered all over the front door was a very pretty bistro. That was it. The rest of the sentence was probably . . . but the food is shit. The restaurant … Continue reading Once a Waitress
SAYS WHO? you might say. Well says me. Only three weeks ago I saw one of my work colleagues being ranted at by an ex-student because he wanted a meeting 'NOW' and she politely explained that she couldn't as she had to leave and pick up her child because if she was late she would … Continue reading 99% of workplace stress down to worrying about childcare
World Book Day 2011 Getting ready for work and on the phone to my sister about finding a suitable home for our rapidly deteriorating father. 'I can’t talk now,' I sigh. 'You can never talk,' says my sister, quite reasonably. 'Yes but now I really can't talk. My daughter is sitting on the toilet dressed … Continue reading World *Boak* Day
Remember Dr Raj Persaud? He used to be on television, a reliable, medically qualified psychiatrist who could explain complex medical issues on the Richard and Judy sofa, without sounding patronising. He also presented, All in the Mind on Radio 4. Then, in his book, On the Edge of the Couch, he admitted plagiarising Professor Thomas Blass, … Continue reading A plagiarism on both your houses
Rewriting is like grieving. Nobody wants to face it, but the only way out of it is through it.
That reality star with those plasticky whoppers She lies down on the beach, they stick up like space hoppers In the picture she’s stumbling out of a nightclub – again And guess what – she’s a mum – how dare she have fun. On the Daily Mail sidebar of shame. Jen’s blowdried and glossy but … Continue reading The Daily Mail Sidebar of Shame
I have a letter in The Guardian today, in the light of deeply disturbing allegations of a child abuse ring in Parliament, dating back to the eighties. Several other letters draw attention to the appalling lack of care of our most vulnerable children. So far, all we have had from successive governments is weasel words. … Continue reading Child Abuse: Tip of the Iceberg