Winner, Edinburgh International Flash Fiction Award 2018
excerpt from Full Circle
Picnic eaten and Mum and Dad settled in deck chairs with a thermos, our brothers would send Nuala and me to draw circles in the wet sand. This task was our responsibility, our contribution to the ritual of the beach.
Oblivious of the wide-winged gulls, ignoring the fall of waves at the sea edge, Nuala and I worked. We decorated our lines with shells and seaweed and smooth, round pebbles. Our skins were sticky with salt water.
I have been writing off and on for the last thirty years, while living in England’s Peak District. At first, I wrote short stories and then novels, with some competition successes but no publisher for the novels. More recently, while continuing work on the latest novel, I have become increasingly drawn to the challenges of flash fiction. I think of it as telling a short and simple tale in a way which encourages the reader to paint her own more complex story around the bare bones I have given her. In the last few years my flash fiction has been placed in competitions including Fish Publishing and the Bridport Prize.
I grew up in Fife and graduated from Edinburgh University. Derbyshire’s gritstone edges and heather moors are stunning, but it is always a joy to come home to Scotland.