Thursday, 21 April 2011

Paris Diary

I just got back from a flying vist to Paris. I was there for business and pleasure, although I have to say that the business part of the trip was also a total pleasure.

First up I ran a writing workshop called Plotting Your Way to Writing Success. It's one I run quite regularly and it focuses on the business of writing rather than the actual writing itself.

The aim of the workshop is to help writers overcome any obstacles they may have when it comes to writing - and these can be internal, such as lack of confidence, and external, such as lack of time. Then, once we've tackled these, we move on to set writing goals and action plans.

It may sound odd talking about an art form in such business terms but for those writers who want to earn a living from their writing I think it is essential to treat it as a business.

The writers I met in Paris were a lovely group who meet regularly to critique each other's work. Writing can be such a solitary pastime there's a lot of benefit to be had from joining or forming some kind of writing group.

After the workshop I hotfooted it over to Erzsi Deak's apartment near the Louvre. Erzsi is my literary agent and founder of the Hen & Ink Literary Studio in Paris.

With Erzsi Deak, my literary agent and Hen & Ink Founder
Erzsi was throwing a party to celebrate the birth of Hen & Ink and so hen-themed gifts - and puns - were in abundance.

It was a great opportunity to meet some of the other writers in her 'coop'. Here we are at the end of the night after one too many 'cock'tails, and about five hundred too many hen puns!

The Hen & Ink Coop

The following day I went to one of my favourite places in Paris, Pere Lachaise cemetery.

Here is an example of some of the stunning sculptures on display...

Sculpture at Pere Lachaise

The cemetery goes on for miles and is like a beautiful walled city. It had such an effect upon me the first time I went I actually set a scene there in my next YA novel, Finding Cherokee Brown. The thing I love most about it is the way you never know what you might find around the next corner or down the next lane. Here's someone I found this time round...

Lady in Yellow
 Isn't she beautiful?

Back next week with more book news, interviews and reviews. Until then I'd like to wish you all a very Happy Easter!


  1. I want to go to Paris! I'm glad you had a good time :)

  2. It was brilliant, Cliona - hope you get to go soon :)