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Janey Robinson

Flash Fiction Friday #4

Aug
24

“C for Cat”

Inspired by the picture book Wild, written and illustrated by Emily Hughes, here’s my micro-story for the wild-at-heart cat I’ve called Clive.

Clive was tired of being told he was a cat, when

He knew he was a TIGER.

He had a plan to prove everyone wrong, it involved a race,

Then jumping on Bear to frighten her.

Janey’s Flash Fiction Friday: 

Short stories by me, inspired by picture book extras from the books I love.

 

My First Picture Book Retreat, What a Treat

Aug
12

Last month I joined the SCBWI Picture Book Retreat in rural Worcestershire to hone my writing skills and learn from a raft of writing and illustrating pros. It was my first writer’s retreat, or retreat of any kind in fact. I think, like many, my preconceptions of a retreat was full of negative connotations. Awkward meal times, bunking down with snoring strangers, barefoot hippy types who would surely try to convert you to something, stuff like that. But like most unfounded assumptions I was way off.

Mealtimes were delicious and a racket of chatter, always overrunning as conversations were reluctantly paused. We had separate rooms, phew. No new age conversions, only a collective hope that everyone else’s brilliance would rub off on each other by the end of the weekend. I’ll note that some of us, including me, spent time barefoot, the countryside demands that.

(more…)

Picture Book Update: How the Sun Met the Moon

Jul
08

Something special happened this week, a dream of mine came true. My friend, fellow critique grouper and hugely talented author illustrator James Hutchons, surprised me with an illustrated spread inspired by the first picture book text I ever shared with him. I was, and still am, very excited about it. This is the first time I’ve seen one of my stories illustrated.

5 things I learned at the Emerald Street Lit Fest

Jul
01

Last month I attended the Emerald Street Literary Festival on a damp Saturday at the Royal Geographic Society in London. I’d pre-booked three sessions and brought my notebook for any writing opportunities. Here is what I have mulled over and taken away from the day.

There are always rules with writing.

It can be overwhelming, you write because you have to write. Then you seek to learn how to write better and each time come away with a new set of commandments until every notebook you own has “must do’s” from all sides of the publishing industry. The Faber Academy’s Richard Skinner shared his 5 tips for writers (see below) during his The Bare Bones of Stories workshop. They are a little elusive in that you have to think about each one to really decipher them. My new approach is to listen to any new rules, decide if they make sense and are of use to me, then move on, keep writing and stay focused. (more…)

Sausage Dog Stories

May
26

I’ve drafted so many versions of my Sausage Dog Stories, all incomplete, but I can’t and won’t shake the concept. At least this little poem remains true to all of the incarnations. In the meantime I think I might just be getting to the heart of what I want these stories to be, watch this space.

Wolfy & B

Wolf and Bear; an inseparable pair.

One smooth haired, one wire haired,

Both short legged, without a care. (more…)