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Paula Morris
Sheffield, UK
Fiction writer
Recent Activity
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It's a week since we were exiled from Bellagio: my residency ended, and a taxi drove up to the villa, in pouring rain, to carry us away. It felt like exile, sad and irrevocable. Autumn had turned into late autumn,... Continue reading
Posted 5 days ago at Trendy But Casual
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I'm conscious that I haven't posted since my mother's funeral, that fracture in the year that couldn't be mended or ignored. We're in Italy now, at my Bellagio residency - thanks to the Rockefeller Foundation - on the shores of... Continue reading
Posted Oct 29, 2014 at Trendy But Casual
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At my mother's funeral on Monday, a number of people spoke - including her dear friend, Gael Collins, who was the celebrant, and three of her old friends Margaret Raby, Karlene Boag and Zelma Brown. My sister and nephew both... Continue reading
Posted Aug 20, 2014 at Trendy But Casual
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Fifty years ago this June, my mother arrived in New Zealand. For my father it was a homecoming; for my mother and sister it was an arrival. They sailed on the Oriana from Southampton via Gibraltar, Naples, Port Said, Suez... Continue reading
Posted Aug 15, 2014 at Trendy But Casual
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As well as riding bikes everywhere, saying "Hej!" to people (who generally ignore us), and knowing that a TV commercial that begins with the word "slutspurt" is not saucy in any way, but is in fact promoting the final days... Continue reading
Posted Jul 15, 2014 at Trendy But Casual
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We're halfway through this residency in Svendborg. Some days I wish we could stay here forever. I've been trying my hand again at Brecht's poems - with the help of Doris Eikhof, much more useful a source on the German... Continue reading
Posted Jul 13, 2014 at Trendy But Casual
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We’ve been in Denmark for ten days so far, all but the first night spent staying at Brecht’s house in Svendborg, about 50 KM south of Odense. I have a residency here for a month. All I have to do... Continue reading
Posted Jul 8, 2014 at Trendy But Casual
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The COIC = The City of Iowa City. And that's Herky, the mascot, for those of you unfamiliar with Hawkeye lore. It’s Sunday afternoon, and I’m typing this post in the Java House coffee shop in downtown Iowa City –... Continue reading
Posted Jun 15, 2014 at Trendy But Casual
The Guardian’s latest gambit for readers is called “Generation Y Takeover” (or “generation Y takeover” because lower-case is much more on-message). This means they’ve brought in various Gen-Y “digital trainees” to contribute pieces like “Why I’m taking my Spotify list... Continue reading
Posted Mar 21, 2014 at Trendy But Casual
I have just one week left of radiotherapy, after five weeks of being burned and zapped and prodded, and carrying around my green plastic shopping basket of clothes, and being asked to repeat my birth date and address, and being... Continue reading
Posted Feb 19, 2014 at Trendy But Casual
After lunch today (outside: grey sky, gushing river, the peep of a wagtail flitting about): PM: I'm going to work on my book now. TM: Which book? PM: Rome. TM: It wasn't written in a day. PM: [nothing] TM: Why... Continue reading
Posted Feb 6, 2014 at Trendy But Casual
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This is a picture taken around 1893. It’s my great-great-grandmother, Rahui Te Kiri, with Ngapeka, the daughter of her first marriage, to Te Roa. My great-grandfather, Kiri Tenetahi Brown (Paraone) was a child of her second marriage, to Tenetahi. In... Continue reading
Posted Jan 23, 2014 at Trendy But Casual
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New year, new intentions. Or old intentions (get more work, do more work, earn more money) dressed up in optimistic spring shades, swishing their skirts. Plus some abandoned intentions from last year, of course. My short-story-a-day promise collided with my... Continue reading
Posted Jan 3, 2014 at Trendy But Casual
TMiddy and I are jetsetters. You all know this. Sometimes I wish that this involved things like being invited to someone's villa in Ibiza, or onto someone's yacht anywhere, but it does not. Usually it means that I travel back... Continue reading
Posted Dec 15, 2013 at Trendy But Casual
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Despite the short days, I usually look forward to November. November in the UK has good things (no Thanksgiving, a holiday I never really enjoyed - no presents, pumpkin pie) and not-so-good things (random fireworks going off at all hours,... Continue reading
Posted Nov 3, 2013 at Trendy But Casual
I wrote the post 'Your story has touched my heart' on Saturday, when I was groggy with painkillers after surgery, and groggy with crying as well, I guess. So I keep thinking about things I should have included about Sarah.... Continue reading
Posted Oct 23, 2013 at Trendy But Casual
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This week our dear friend Sarah Doerries was in Strasbourg, visiting friends there. She was in Europe for a work trip to the Frankfurt Book Fair, representing the Historic New Orleans Collection: she’s Senior Editor in their Books Division. On... Continue reading
Posted Oct 19, 2013 at Trendy But Casual
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TMiddy usually knows things - for example, what time the football is starting, or that there's no such word as "refrigidation." I know I can always ask him, say, what day of the week is it? and he'll have a... Continue reading
Posted Oct 6, 2013 at Trendy But Casual
August this year was a strange month for me – two surgeries, a lot of lying around, interviews via Skype, a ceremony at the Town Hall, my first children’s book published, a new – fake – blog (Everybody Needs Two... Continue reading
Posted Sep 14, 2013 at Trendy But Casual
One of my former students, Eddie Brennan, sent me this story today. Eddie was on the postgrad (MLitt) program I set up in Stirling, and is a very accomplished comedic writer. David Sedaris is one of his big heroes and... Continue reading
Posted Aug 28, 2013 at Trendy But Casual
Occasionally I don't want to let characters go. Some of the characters in Hibiscus Coast, my second novel, reappeared in the short story "Red Christmas," and sometimes I think about writing a sequel to the whole novel. Readers of my... Continue reading
Posted Aug 22, 2013 at Trendy But Casual
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News alert: my foot is slowly improving, and/or turning purple. According to "Dr" Dan, the handsome podiatrist with a poor bedside manner, all will be revealed next Monday when they see the X-rays, remove stitches, etc. In the meantime, he... Continue reading
Posted Aug 14, 2013 at Trendy But Casual
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I'm out of action at the moment. This is what my left foot looked like on Sunday night: A surgeon hacked away at it on Monday, and now it looks like this: Apparently underneath all the bandaging and stitches, my... Continue reading
Posted Aug 6, 2013 at Trendy But Casual
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There are towns called Halfway all over the place - for example, one just south of Sheffield, another near Llandovery in Wales, where our good friends the Keyser/Devlins live. Living in a town called Halfway might feel like living in... Continue reading
Posted Jul 14, 2013 at Trendy But Casual
I need to write some sort of extended article or essay on the various uses of second-person narrative in fiction. (Yes, I really need to!) Maybe after I finish writing this novel - novels pay better than rants on point... Continue reading
Posted Jul 7, 2013 at Trendy But Casual