Category Archives: James Holden

James Holden: Some thoughts on the 2015 National Short Story Award

Like last year, I thought I’d post my thoughts about the BBC’s Short Story of the Year competition. If you’re not familiar with it, this award is open stories that have previously been published or authors who have a track … Continue reading

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James Holden: Do lists on good writing say more about their author?

A couple of weeks I stumbled upon a list of “53 ways to improve your short stories”, published as part of the promotion for a new collection of stories by the Irish writer Thomas Morris. It’s quite a long list, … Continue reading

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James Holden: The Pen Behind His Ear

In an office full of eccentrics, Paul seemed relatively sane by comparison. There were no comedy ties, no opening of meetings with a commentary on Jimmy Webb lyrics, or extreme exercise or dietary regimes. But what he did have, was a … Continue reading

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James Holden: Colin Barrett’s riot of language

Although I’m not getting much writing done myself at the moment, my commute to work means that I still have the time to read, and I’ve just finished reading Colin Barrett’s collection of short stories, Young Skins. One of my … Continue reading

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James Holden: Sarah Waters and keeping track of progress

Sarah Waters is one of my favourite authors, not only for the trilogy of Victorian novels with which she made her name, but her most recent wartime and post-war novels The Night Watch and The Little Friend. So I was delighted … Continue reading

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James Holden: Shiny Happy Person

I hear the song all the time. It’s there when I turn on the radio in the morning, Simon Mayo cheerfully introducing it on Radio One. I turn over to Capital to avoid it, but they’re playing it as well. … Continue reading

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James Holden: The language of writing

Last week there were a couple of items in the news that touched on the choices writers make when it comes to choosing words. The first was a feature in The Guardian, who asked authors for their favourite words. Will Self … Continue reading

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