Tag: writing

My son’s dead body was warm, not cold

Pulp fiction writers have got it wrong. The dead are warm. They’re not stiffs, ice cold to the touch. My baby boy was floppy, he looked asleep. Three days earlier he’d been alive, and for three days my wife carried his corpse inside her. The cradle of life […]

The right to forget

Memory is a burden. A sack of worn-out belongings that have no purpose. Every memory keeps us in check, a stop light on our journey as we recall outcomes from the past when faced with the same junction. I was just three years old when I realised I […]

Journalese: Bigfooting

Ah, the freedom of the open road. You’ve got the address, your subject has not yet given any interviews and thanks to an insomniac newsdesk you’re probably first on the road for The Big Story. All goes to plan: they talk, they even give you some pictures – […]

Is this headline too short?

Metrics. Can’t live with ’em, can’t live without ’em. Actually, it’s the latter. Metrics are showing us a whole new way to appreciate – and measure – the perfectly crafted headline. Only the moon, and perhaps my expense account at the paper, waxes and wanes more than the […]

The 1,000 word stare

It is quite simply the most soothing sound I have ever heard. It has the insistency of a waterfall’s fight with gravity, the rhythm of a wave’s caress, the lightness of a leave’s rustle, the glow of a pollen-laden honeybee’s wing-beat. Ned’s voice. His chest barely moves and the […]

Middens and Piss-pots

Dawn’s light smuggled itself into the village. Like spider threads in the breeze, streaks of sunlight slinked through the tops of the trees before pouring into the patches of the cleared forest. It lapped up against the dozen or so huts before spilling back to form shimmering pools […]