Episodes

  • Men Writing Women (part 1): RJ McBrien, author of Reckless + author & Faber Writing Academy tutor Shelley Weiner, tell We'd Like A Word presenters Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan how male authors can write convincing female characters - and vice versa. 

    RJ McBrien is a very successful TV screenplay writer (Spoowks, The Bill, Soldier Soldier, Atlantis, Merlin, Red Caps, etc), who has also had some crushing and hilarious exploits in movie writing too. Reckless, published by Welbeck Publishing, is this author's first novel. It gets into the mind of an apparently happily married woman who is missing just one thing - good sex. In order to "scratch that itch" (RJ's words, not ours), she gets into some dark, dangerous, poignant and very funny scrapes. RJ is Richard. So - not just a man writing a woman, but writing about the most intimate aspects of her life. Does he pull it off? Is it appropriation? Who helped?

    Shelley Weiner is a major reason Reckless was published. She was the tutor of RJ's Faber Writing Academy course - and guided him to the feminine side. She's also an author. Her titles include: Writing Short Stories, Writing Your First Novel, The Audacious Mendacity of Lily Green, Arnost, The Joker, The Last Honeymoon & A Sister's Tale. She's currently writing Summer Strand, a novel inspired by her Lithuanian parents who met and married in the Kaunas ghetto, were sent to separate Nazi concentration camps, survived the Holocaust, found each other again in a post-war camp for displaced people in Italy, & managed to reach South Africa - just as apartheid was imposed.

    We also hear personal stories of encounters with Jodie Foster, Arthur Miller, Ewan McGregor, Heath Ledger & Ted Demme. We discuss "nerks" (is that how you spell nerk?) - non-swearing swear words - like the frequency of toerags in The Bill. We discover the importance of the type of "and" or "&" and where it's placed in movie credits. We hear what happens when a film studio asks you rewrite a film script, not relaising you were the original author in the first place. We hear which are easier to write - books or screenplays? And about the importance of authors' support groups, beat readers, bad and good sex writing, Adrian McKinty, Brian McGilloway, body dismorphia amongst middle-aged women, Raven Leilani, Jilly Cooper, Jackie Collins, top writing tips from Shelley, the contract with the reader, staying inside your story, editor Niamh Mulvey, integrity v cynicism, and lots of useful insight. There's a bit of cursing too - even worse words than toerag. Sorry.

    We'd Like A Word is a podcast & radio show from authors Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan. We talk with writers, readers, editors, agents, celebrities, talkers, poets, publishers, booksellers, audiobook creators about books - fiction & non-fiction. We go out on various radio & podcast platforms. Our website is http://www.wedlikeaword.com for information on Paul & Steve & our guests. We're also on Twitter @wedlikeaword & Facebook @wedlikeaword & our email is wedlikeaword@gmail.com Yes, we are embarrassed by the missing apostrophes. We like to hear from you - questions, thoughts, ideas, guest or book suggestions. Perhaps you'd like to come on We'd Like A Word to chat, review or read out passages from books. And if you're still stuck for something to read, may we recommend Blackwatertown by Paul Waters or The Diabolical Club by Stevyn Colgan.

  • Men Writing Women (part 2): RJ McBrien, author of Reckless + author & Faber Writing Academy tutor Shelley Weiner, tell We'd Like A Word presenters Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan how male authors can write convincing female characters - and vice versa.

    RJ McBrien is a very successful TV screenplay writer (Spooks, The Bill, Soldier Soldier, Atlantis, Merlin, Red Caps, etc), who has also had some crushing and hilarious exploits in movie writing too. Reckless, published by Welbeck Publishing, is this author's first novel. It gets into the mind of an apparently happily married woman who is missing just one thing - good sex. In order to "scratch that itch" (RJ's words, not ours), she gets into some dark, dangerous, poignant and very funny scrapes. RJ is Richard. So - not just a man writing a woman, but writing about the most intimate aspects of her life. Does he pull it off? Is it appropriation? Who helped?

    Shelley Weiner is a major reason Reckless was published. She was the tutor of RJ's Faber Writing Academy course - and guided him to the feminine side. She's also an author. Her titles include: Writing Short Stories, Writing Your First Novel, The Audacious Mendacity of Lily Green, Arnost, The Joker, The Last Honeymoon & A Sister's Tale. She's currently writing Summer Strand, a novel inspired by her Lithuanian parents who met and married in the Kaunas ghetto, were sent to separate Nazi concentration camps, survived the Holocaust, found each other again in a post-war camp for displaced people in Italy, & managed to reach South Africa - just as apartheid was imposed.

    We also hear personal stories of encounters with Jodie Foster, Arthur Miller, Ewan McGregor, Heath Ledger & Ted Demme. We discuss "nerks" (is that how you spell nerk?) - non-swearing swear words - like the frequency of toerags in The Bill. We discover the importance of the type of "and" or "&" and where it's placed in movie credits. We hear what happens when a film studio asks you rewrite a film script, not relaising you were the original author in the first place. We hear which are easier to write - books or screenplays? And about the importance of authors' support groups, beat readers, bad and good sex writing, Adrian McKinty, Brian McGilloway, body dismorphia amongst middle-aged women, Raven Leilani, Jilly Cooper, Jackie Collins, top writing tips from Shelley, the contract with the reader, staying inside your story, editor Niamh Mulvey, integrity v cynicism, and lots of useful insight. There's a bit of cursing too - even worse words than toerag. Sorry.

    We'd Like A Word is a podcast & radio show from authors Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan. We talk with writers, readers, editors, agents, celebrities, talkers, poets, publishers, booksellers, audiobook creators about books - fiction & non-fiction. We go out on various radio & podcast platforms. Our website is http://www.wedlikeaword.com for information on Paul & Steve & our guests. We're also on Twitter @wedlikeaword & Facebook @wedlikeaword & our email is wedlikeaword@gmail.com Yes, we are embarrassed by the missing apostrophes. We like to hear from you - questions, thoughts, ideas, guest or book suggestions. Perhaps you'd like to come on We'd Like A Word to chat, review or read out passages from books. And if you're still stuck for something to read, may we recommend Blackwatertown by Paul Waters or The Diabolical Club by Stevyn Colgan.

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  • Men Writing Women (part 3): RJ McBrien, author of Reckless + author & Faber Writing Academy tutor Shelley Weiner, tell We'd Like A Word presenters Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan how male authors can write convincing female characters - and vice versa.

    RJ McBrien is a very successful TV screenplay writer (Spooks, The Bill, Soldier Soldier, Atlantis, Merlin, Red Caps, etc), who has also had some crushing and hilarious exploits in movie writing too. Reckless, published by Welbeck Publishing, is this author's first novel. It gets into the mind of an apparently happily married woman who is missing just one thing - good sex. In order to "scratch that itch" (RJ's words, not ours), she gets into some dark, dangerous, poignant and very funny scrapes. RJ is Richard. So - not just a man writing a woman, but writing about the most intimate aspects of her life. Does he pull it off? Is it appropriation? Who helped?

    Shelley Weiner is a major reason Reckless was published. She was the tutor of RJ's Faber Writing Academy course - and guided him to the feminine side. She's also an author. Her titles include: Writing Short Stories, Writing Your First Novel, The Audacious Mendacity of Lily Green, Arnost, The Joker, The Last Honeymoon & A Sister's Tale. She's currently writing Summer Strand, a novel inspired by her Lithuanian parents who met and married in the Kaunas ghetto, were sent to separate Nazi concentration camps, survived the Holocaust, found each other again in a post-war camp for displaced people in Italy, & managed to reach South Africa - just as apartheid was imposed.

    We also hear personal stories of encounters with Jodie Foster, Arthur Miller, Ewan McGregor, Heath Ledger & Ted Demme. We discuss "nerks" (is that how you spell nerk?) - non-swearing swear words - like the frequency of toerags in The Bill. We discover the importance of the type of "and" or "&" and where it's placed in movie credits. We hear what happens when a film studio asks you rewrite a film script, not relaising you were the original author in the first place. We hear which are easier to write - books or screenplays? And about the importance of authors' support groups, beat readers, bad and good sex writing, Adrian McKinty, Brian McGilloway, body dismorphia amongst middle-aged women, Raven Leilani, Jilly Cooper, Jackie Collins, top writing tips from Shelley, the contract with the reader, staying inside your story, editor Niamh Mulvey, integrity v cynicism, and lots of useful insight. There's a bit of cursing too - even worse words than toerag. Sorry.

    We'd Like A Word is a podcast & radio show from authors Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan. We talk with writers, readers, editors, agents, celebrities, talkers, poets, publishers, booksellers, audiobook creators about books - fiction & non-fiction. We go out on various radio & podcast platforms. Our website is http://www.wedlikeaword.com for information on Paul & Steve & our guests. We're also on Twitter @wedlikeaword & Facebook @wedlikeaword & our email is wedlikeaword@gmail.com Yes, we are embarrassed by the missing apostrophes. We like to hear from you - questions, thoughts, ideas, guest or book suggestions. Perhaps you'd like to come on We'd Like A Word to chat, review or read out passages from books. And if you're still stuck for something to read, may we recommend Blackwatertown by Paul Waters or The Diabolical Club by Stevyn Colgan.

  • Fictionalising recent history (part 1): Scottish crime fiction author Alan Parks & Irish writer Eamon Somers tell We'd Like A Word presenters Paul Waters and Stevyn Colgan about how they set their stories in the recent past and get it right. Alan Parks is the author of The April Dead, published by Canongate, set in 1970s Glasgow, featuring detective Harry McCoy. According to Peter May (who we've also had on We'd Like A Word), Alan's "1970s Glasgow is hewn from flesh and drawn in blood." The Times said "Detective Harry McCoy is so noir that he makes most other Scottish cops seem light grey." Alan's books come out in the month mentioned in the title - The April Dead follows Bloody January, February's Son & Bobby March Will Live Forever. If your book is hundreds of years ago, fewer people will be able to spot your mistakes or have strong opinions on how it really was. But if, like Alan, your book is set in the 1970s, or, like Eamon, your book is set in the 1980s, brace yourself for close scrutiny. It also means there'll be as many "true" versions of your time period as there are readers who remember it. We hear how Alan and Eamon scatter subtle signals of the time - using musical references, the weather, smoking - and in Alan's case, a sinister thread on torture by members of the British military in Kenya, Malaya and Northern Ireland during the years of decolonisation. Before he was an author, Alan worked in the music industry. So we also ask about his time with Enya, New Order and All Saints. Alan's website is https://www.alanparks.co.uk
    Eamon Somers is the author of Dolly Considine's Hotel, published by Unbound, which switches back and forth between the 1980s of the Irish abortion referendum and previous decades. It's inspired by his own time working in a Dublin shebeen near the Gate Theatre, where the likes of film and theatre director Peter Bogdanovich and politicians would linger for illicit drinking. Eamon was a campaigner in Ireland's fledgling gay liberation movement, serving three terms as spokesperson for Ireland’s National Gay Federation. When he moved to London he worked for a while Haringey Council’s Lesbian and Gay Unit (including the anti-Clause 28 campaign). But he says he certainly did not want to write yet another coming out misery memoir - he was determined that the gay leading character must NOT die. His website is https://www.eamonsomers.com
    We also talk about why authors put racist language only in the mouths of baddies - painting too rosy a picture? And Abba, Orson Welles, Bay City Rollers, how the Scottish Liberation Front might have blocked Stiff Little Fingers from stardom (SLF), TV's Country Matters, Fat City directed by John Huston, The Red Balloon, The Graduate, how the '70s were really orange, Mau Mau, abortion, Mother Ireland & writing the past through the lens of the present.
    We'd Like A Word is a podcast & radio show from authors Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan. We talk with writers, readers, editors, agents, celebrities, talkers, poets, publishers, booksellers, audiobook creators about books - fiction & non-fiction. We go out on various radio & podcast platforms. Our website is http://www.wedlikeaword.com for information on Paul & Steve & our guests. We're also on Twitter @wedlikeaword & Facebook @wedlikeaword & our email is wedlikeaword@gmail.com Yes, we are embarrassed by the missing apostrophes. We like to hear from you - questions, thoughts, ideas, guest or book suggestions. Perhaps you'd like to come on We'd Like A Word to chat, review or read out passages from books. And if you're still stuck for something to read, may we recommend Blackwatertown by Paul Waters or The Diabolical Club by Stevyn Colgan.

  • Fictionalising recent history (part 2): Scottish crime fiction author Alan Parks & Irish writer Eamon Somers tell We'd Like A Word presenters Paul Waters and Stevyn Colgan about how they set their stories in the recent past and get it right. Alan Parks is the author of The April Dead, published by Canongate, set in 1970s Glasgow, featuring detective Harry McCoy. According to Peter May (who we've also had on We'd Like A Word), Alan's "1970s Glasgow is hewn from flesh and drawn in blood." The Times said "Detective Harry McCoy is so noir that he makes most other Scottish cops seem light grey." Alan's books come out in the month mentioned in the title - The April Dead follows Bloody January, February's Son & Bobby March Will Live Forever. If your book is hundreds of years ago, fewer people will be able to spot your mistakes or have strong opinions on how it really was. But if, like Alan, your book is set in the 1970s, or, like Eamon, your book is set in the 1980s, brace yourself for close scrutiny. It also means there'll be as many "true" versions of your time period as there are readers who remember it. We hear how Alan and Eamon scatter subtle signals of the time - using musical references, the weather, smoking - and in Alan's case, a sinister thread on torture by members of the British military in Kenya, Malaya and Northern Ireland during the years of decolonisation. Before he was an author, Alan worked in the music industry. So we also ask about his time with Enya, New Order and All Saints. Alan's website is https://www.alanparks.co.uk
    Eamon Somers is the author of Dolly Considine's Hotel, published by Unbound, which switches back and forth between the 1980s of the Irish abortion referendum and previous decades. It's inspired by his own time working in a Dublin shebeen near the Gate Theatre, where the likes of film and theatre director Peter Bogdanovich and politicians would linger for illicit drinking. Eamon was a campaigner in Ireland's fledgling gay liberation movement, serving three terms as spokesperson for Ireland’s National Gay Federation. When he moved to London he worked for a while Haringey Council’s Lesbian and Gay Unit (including the anti-Clause 28 campaign). But he says he certainly did not want to write yet another coming out misery memoir - he was determined that the gay leading character must NOT die. His website is https://www.eamonsomers.com
    We also talk about why authors put racist language only in the mouths of baddies - painting too rosy a picture? And Abba, Orson Welles, Bay City Rollers, how the Scottish Liberation Front might have blocked Stiff Little Fingers from stardom (SLF), TV's Country Matters, Fat City directed by John Huston, The Red Balloon, The Graduate, how the '70s were really orange, Mau Mau, abortion, Mother Ireland & writing the past through the lens of the present.
    We'd Like A Word is a podcast & radio show from authors Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan. We talk with writers, readers, editors, agents, celebrities, talkers, poets, publishers, booksellers, audiobook creators about books - fiction & non-fiction. We go out on various radio & podcast platforms. Our website is http://www.wedlikeaword.com for information on Paul & Steve & our guests. We're also on Twitter @wedlikeaword & Facebook @wedlikeaword & our email is wedlikeaword@gmail.com Yes, we are embarrassed by the missing apostrophes. We like to hear from you - questions, thoughts, ideas, guest or book suggestions. Perhaps you'd like to come on We'd Like A Word to chat, review or read out passages from books. And if you're still stuck for something to read, may we recommend Blackwatertown by Paul Waters or The Diabolical Club by Stevyn Colgan.

  • Fictionalising recent history (part 3): Scottish crime fiction author Alan Parks & Irish writer Eamon Somers tell We'd Like A Word presenters Paul Waters and Stevyn Colgan about how they set their stories in the recent past and get it right. Alan Parks is the author of The April Dead, published by Canongate, set in 1970s Glasgow, featuring detective Harry McCoy. According to Peter May (who we've also had on We'd Like A Word), Alan's "1970s Glasgow is hewn from flesh and drawn in blood." The Times said "Detective Harry McCoy is so noir that he makes most other Scottish cops seem light grey." Alan's books come out in the month mentioned in the title - The April Dead follows Bloody January, February's Son & Bobby March Will Live Forever. If your book is hundreds of years ago, fewer people will be able to spot your mistakes or have strong opinions on how it really was. But if, like Alan, your book is set in the 1970s, or, like Eamon, your book is set in the 1980s, brace yourself for close scrutiny. It also means there'll be as many "true" versions of your time period as there are readers who remember it. We hear how Alan and Eamon scatter subtle signals of the time - using musical references, the weather, smoking - and in Alan's case, a sinister thread on torture by members of the British military in Kenya, Malaya and Northern Ireland during the years of decolonisation. Before he was an author, Alan worked in the music industry. So we also ask about his time with Enya, New Order and All Saints. Alan's website is https://www.alanparks.co.uk
    Eamon Somers is the author of Dolly Considine's Hotel, published by Unbound, which switches back and forth between the 1980s of the Irish abortion referendum and previous decades. It's inspired by his own time working in a Dublin shebeen near the Gate Theatre, where the likes of film and theatre director Peter Bogdanovich and politicians would linger for illicit drinking. Eamon was a campaigner in Ireland's fledgling gay liberation movement, serving three terms as spokesperson for Ireland’s National Gay Federation. When he moved to London he worked for a while Haringey Council’s Lesbian and Gay Unit (including the anti-Clause 28 campaign). But he says he certainly did not want to write yet another coming out misery memoir - he was determined that the gay leading character must NOT die. His website is https://www.eamonsomers.com 
    We also talk about why authors put racist language only in the mouths of baddies - painting too rosy a picture? And Abba, Orson Welles, Bay City Rollers, how the Scottish Liberation Front might have blocked Stiff Little Fingers from stardom (SLF), TV's Country Matters, Fat City directed by John Huston, The Red Balloon, The Graduate, how the '70s were really orange, Mau Mau, abortion, Mother Ireland & writing the past through the lens of the present.
    We'd Like A Word is a podcast & radio show from authors Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan. We talk with writers, readers, editors, agents, celebrities, talkers, poets, publishers, booksellers, audiobook creators about books - fiction & non-fiction. We go out on various radio & podcast platforms. Our website is http://www.wedlikeaword.com for information on Paul & Steve & our guests. We're also on Twitter @wedlikeaword & Facebook @wedlikeaword & our email is wedlikeaword@gmail.com Yes, we are embarrassed by the missing apostrophes. We like to hear from you - questions, thoughts, ideas, guest or book suggestions. Perhaps you'd like to come on We'd Like A Word to chat, review or read out passages from books. And if you're still stuck for something to read, may we recommend Blackwatertown by Paul Waters or The Diabolical Club by Stevyn Colgan.

  • Becoming a children's author and illustrator (part 1): The legendary children's author Julia Donaldson & new children's author and illustrator Ted Chaplin talk to We'd Like A Word presenters Paul Waters and Stevyn Colgan about how to create really good stories for young readers. Julia is the former Children's Laureate and the author of A Squash And A Squeeze, The Gruffalo, The Smartest Giant in Town, Stickman and more than a hundred books read by and to children, again and again and again. Many of them illustrated by Axel Scheffler. Now Julia is curating an online course to pass on her advice - and the advice of other experts - to other people who would like to become children's authors. It's under the auspices of the BBC Maestro series. You can find more details by following this link https://www.bbcmaestro.com/courses/julia-donaldson/writing-children-s-picture-books - 27 lessons lasting 6.5 hours, costing £80 In the meantime, Julia some surprising revelations for We'd Like A Word listeners. But what about Ted Chaplin - he's been at the top of the movie animation tree for a long time - working Farmageddon (Shaun the Sheep), Early Man, the Pirates in an Adventure with Scientists, Captain Scarlet, and Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull (but it wasn't his fault - if you've seen the film, you'll know what we mean). But now he's moving into writing and illustrating children's picture stories. It's been more than a year since presenters Paul and Stevyn have been able to get together face-to-face to interview a guest - due to covid - but in this episode we meet in Ted Chaplin's workshop, (which is a lot tidier looking than Steve's, I can tell you). We see Ted's work-in-progress - including a very very cute sloth-like creature.  We also talk about Jed Mercurio, The Scarecrow's Wedding, Korky Paul, Strictly Come Dancing and the Great British Bake-Off, Sussex Wildlife Trust, Woolly Bear Caterpillar, the Gruffalo, Princess Mirabelle, the Beth and Ginny stories, The Hobbit, The Wind in the Willows, Hamnett by Maggie O'Farrell, Scoop by Evelyn Waugh, Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull, Brian Blessed, The Pirates in an Adventure with Scientists, Aardman Animation, The Imaginarium and Andy Serkis, the Highway Rat, David Tennant, Axel Scheffler, secret codes in movie making, Doctor Who and Star Wars, The Postscript Murders by Elly Griffiths, The Thursday Murder Club by Richard Osman, Rockabye Rumpus, Oi Frog by Kes Gray, Running on the Cracks, Enid Blyton, Kenneth Grahame, Richmal Crompton's Just William books, The Borrowers, E Nesbit, Judith Kerr, Quentin Blake, Raymond Briggs, smashing a Blue Peter trophy, Pride and Prejudice, favourite writing or drawing implements, Mr Men, Spot the Dog, Captain Scarlet, Cat Deeley, Black Panther, the Hulk, Ant and Dec, bums and farts, a Kookaburra and Faber pencils.  We'd Like A Word is a podcast & radio show from authors Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan. We talk with writers, readers, editors, agents, celebrities, talkers, poets, publishers, booksellers, audiobook creators about books - fiction & non-fiction. We go out on various radio & podcast platforms. Our website is www.wedlikeaword.com -  which is where you'll find information about Paul & Steve & our guests.  We're also on Twitter @wedlikeaword & Facebook @wedlikeaword & our email is wedlikeaword@gmail.com - & yes, we are slightly embarrassed by the missing apostrophes. We like to hear from you - your questions, thoughts, ideas, guest or book suggestions. Perhaps you'd like to come on We'd Like A Word in person, to chat, review, meet writers or read out passages from books. And if you're still stuck for something to read, may we recommend Blackwatertown by Paul Waters or The Diabolical Club by Stevyn Colgan.

  • Becoming a children's author and illustrator (part 2): The legendary children's author Julia Donaldson & new children's author and illustrator Ted Chaplin talk to We'd Like A Word presenters Paul Waters and Stevyn Colgan about how to create really good stories for young readers. Julia is the former Children's Laureate and the author of A Squash And A Squeeze, The Gruffalo, The Smartest Giant in Town, Stickman and more than a hundred books read by and to children, again and again and again. Many of them illustrated by Axel Scheffler. Now Julia is curating an online course to pass on her advice - and the advice of other experts - to other people who would like to become children's authors. It's under the auspices of the BBC Maestro series. You can find more details by following this link https://www.bbcmaestro.com/courses/julia-donaldson/writing-children-s-picture-books - 27 lessons lasting 6.5 hours, costing £80 In the meantime, Julia some surprising revelations for We'd Like A Word listeners. But what about Ted Chaplin - he's been at the top of the movie animation tree for a long time - working Farmageddon (Shaun the Sheep), Early Man, the Pirates in an Adventure with Scientists, Captain Scarlet, and Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull (but it wasn't his fault - if you've seen the film, you'll know what we mean). But now he's moving into writing and illustrating children's picture stories. It's been more than a year since presenters Paul and Stevyn have been able to get together face-to-face to interview a guest - due to covid - but in this episode we meet in Ted Chaplin's workshop, (which is a lot tidier looking than Steve's, I can tell you). We see Ted's work-in-progress - including a very very cute sloth-like creature.  We also talk about Jed Mercurio, The Scarecrow's Wedding, Korky Paul, Strictly Come Dancing and the Great British Bake-Off, Sussex Wildlife Trust, Wolly Bear Caterpillar, the Gruffalo, Princess Mirabelle, the Beth and Ginny stories, The Hobbit, The Wind in the Willows, Hamnett by maggie O'Farrell, Scopp by Evelyn Waugh, Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull, Brian Blessed, The Pirates in an Adventure with Scientists, Aardman Animation, The Imaginarium and Andy Serkis, the Highway Rat, David Tennant, Axel Scheffler, secret codes in movie making, Doctor Who and Star Wars, The Postscript Murders by Elly Griffiths, The Thursday Murder Club by Richard Osman, Rockabye Rumpus, Oi Frog by Kes Gray, Running on the Cracks, Enid Blyton, Kenneth Grahame, Richmal Crompton's Just William books, The Borrowers, E Nesbit, Judith Kerr, Quentin Blake, Raymond Briggs, smashing a Blue Peter trophy, Pride and Prejudice, favourite writing or drawing implements, Mr Men, Spot the Dog, Captain Scarlet, Cat Deeley, Black Panther, the Hulk, Ant and Dec, bums and farts, a Kookaburra and Faber pencils.  We'd Like A Word is a podcast & radio show from authors Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan. We talk with writers, readers, editors, agents, celebrities, talkers, poets, publishers, booksellers, audiobook creators about books - fiction & non-fiction. We go out on various radio & podcast platforms. Our website is www.wedlikeaword.com -  which is where you'll find information about Paul & Steve & our guests.  We're also on Twitter @wedlikeaword & Facebook @wedlikeaword & our email is wedlikeaword@gmail.com - & yes, we are slightly embarrassed by the missing apostrophes. We like to hear from you - your questions, thoughts, ideas, guest or book suggestions. Perhaps you'd like to come on We'd Like A Word in person, to chat, review, meet writers or read out passages from books. And if you're still stuck for something to read, may we recommend Blackwatertown by Paul Waters or The Diabolical Club by Stevyn Colgan.

  • Becoming a children's author and illustrator (part 3): The legendary children's author Julia Donaldson & new children's author and illustrator Ted Chaplin talk to We'd Like A Word presenters Paul Waters and Stevyn Colgan about how to create really good stories for young readers. Julia is the former Children's Laureate and the author of A Squash And A Squeeze, The Gruffalo, The Smartest Giant in Town, Stickman and more than a hundred books read by and to children, again and again and again. Many of them illustrated by Axel Scheffler. Now Julia is curating an online course to pass on her advice - and the advice of other experts - to other people who would like to become children's authors. It's under the auspices of the BBC Maestro series. You can find more details by following this link https://www.bbcmaestro.com/courses/julia-donaldson/writing-children-s-picture-books - 27 lessons lasting 6.5 hours, costing £80 In the meantime, Julia some surprising revelations for We'd Like A Word listeners. But what about Ted Chaplin - he's been at the top of the movie animation tree for a long time - working Farmageddon (Shaun the Sheep), Early Man, the Pirates in an Adventure with Scientists, Captain Scarlet, and Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull (but it wasn't his fault - if you've seen the film, you'll know what we mean). But now he's moving into writing and illustrating children's picture stories. It's been more than a year since presenters Paul and Stevyn have been able to get together face-to-face to interview a guest - due to covid - but in this episode we meet in Ted Chaplin's workshop, (which is a lot tidier looking than Steve's, I can tell you). We see Ted's work-in-progress - including a very very cute sloth-like creature.

    We also talk about Jed Mercurio, The Scarecrow's Wedding, Korky Paul, Strictly Come Dancing and the Great British Bake-Off, Sussex Wildlife Trust, Wolly Bear Caterpillar, the Gruffalo, Princess Mirabelle, the Beth and Ginny stories, The Hobbit, The Wind in the Willows, Hamnett by maggie O'Farrell, Scopp by Evelyn Waugh, Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull, Brian Blessed, The Pirates in an Adventure with Scientists, Aardman Animation, The Imaginarium and Andy Serkis, the Highway Rat, David Tennant, Axel Scheffler, secret codes in movie making, Doctor Who and Star Wars, The Postscript Murders by Elly Griffiths, The Thursday Murder Club by Richard Osman, Rockabye Rumpus, Oi Frog by Kes Gray, Running on the Cracks, Enid Blyton, Kenneth Grahame, Richmal Crompton's Just William books, The Borrowers, E Nesbit, Judith Kerr, Quentin Blake, Raymond Briggs, smashing a Blue Peter trophy, Pride and Prejudice, favourite writing or drawing implements, Mr Men, Spot the Dog, Captain Scarlet, Cat Deeley, Black Panther, the Hulk, Ant and Dec, bums and farts, a Kookaburra and Faber pencils.

    We'd Like A Word is a podcast & radio show from authors Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan. We talk with writers, readers, editors, agents, celebrities, talkers, poets, publishers, booksellers, audiobook creators about books - fiction & non-fiction. We go out on various radio & podcast platforms. Our website is www.wedlikeaword.com -  which is where you'll find information about Paul & Steve & our guests.  We're also on Twitter @wedlikeaword & Facebook @wedlikeaword & our email is wedlikeaword@gmail.com - & yes, we are slightly embarrassed by the missing apostrophes. We like to hear from you - your questions, thoughts, ideas, guest or book suggestions. Perhaps you'd like to come on We'd Like A Word in person, to chat, review, meet writers or read out passages from books. And if you're still stuck for something to read, may we recommend Blackwatertown by Paul Waters or The Diabolical Club by Stevyn Colgan.

  • Writing Memoirs (part 1): Farah Bashir & Auriel Roe talk to We'd Like A Word presenters Paul Waters and Stevyn Colgan about what makes a good memoir. Farah Bashir's new book, Rumours of Spring, is about her girlhood growing up in Kashmir during an insurgency and severe security crackdown. Her family home was repeatedly searched by the army, a relative shot dead, a schoolfriend attacked with acid and her family life, education and local traditions radically disrupted. Farah writes about how the conflict and living in fear had particular impacts on women and girls - altering their posture, menstruation, visibility and core sense of self. But her book is not an unbroken litany of misery - far from it. It's a fascinating and illuminating insight into a warm family life and a rich imagination. The details and small behaviours she describes bring Srinagar vividly to life. Farah explains why she wrote Rumours of Spring; how she had to wait until she was ready; the challenges in revealing very personal aspects of her own and her family's lives; and how to make her individual story gripping for people who've never met her - her readers. Farah is from Kashmir and these days lives in Delhi. Rumours of Spring is published by Harper Collins India.And we also hear from Auriel Roe, who joins us from Spain, where she runs The Memoirist website and international memoir publisher Dogberry Books. She loves publishing other people's memoirs and is deluged with submissions. However, too many of them are boring or unremittingly miserable. Auriel is on a quest for relatable personal stories with at least of tinge of humour. Which does not mean that they cannot be serious, but does hope for some self-awareness.We also talk about David Attenborough, Douglas Adams and Mark Carwardine (Last Chance to See), Berthold Brecht, Black Lives Matter, Joan Didion (The Year of Magical Thinking), Hisham Matar (The Return), Suad Amiry (Sharon and My Mother-in-Law), Stephen Fry, Thomas Bewick, Oliver Postgate (Seeing Things), Bagpuss, The Clangers, Nogging the Nog, Christine Adams and Michael McMahon (Miss Savidge Moves Her House), George Orwell, Joseph O'Neill (Blood-Dark Track: A Family History), Grace Jones (I'll Never Write My Memoirs), Primo Levi and Basharat Peer (Curfewed Night).We'd Like A Word is a podcast & radio show from authors Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan. We talk with writers, readers, editors, agents, celebrities, talkers, poets, publishers, booksellers, audiobook creators about books - fiction & non-fiction. We go out on various radio & podcast platforms. Our website is www.wedlikeaword.com - which is where you'll find information about Paul & Steve & our guests. We're also on Twitter @wedlikeaword & Facebook @wedlikeaword & our email is wedlikeaword@gmail.com - & yes, we are slightly embarrassed by the missing apostrophes. We like to hear from you - your questions, thoughts, ideas, guest or book suggestions. Perhaps you'd like to come on We'd Like A Word in person, to chat, review, meet writers or read out passages from books. And if you're still stuck for something to read, may we recommend Blackwatertown by Paul Waters or The Diabolical Club by Stevyn Colgan.

  • Writing Memoirs (part 2): Farah Bashir & Auriel Roe talk to We'd Like A Word presenters Paul Waters and Stevyn Colgan about what makes a good memoir. Farah Bashir's new book, Rumours of Spring, is about her girlhood growing up in Kashmir during an insurgency and severe security crackdown. Her family home was repeatedly searched by the army, a relative shot dead, a schoolfriend attacked with acid and her family life, education and local traditions radically disrupted. Farah writes about how the conflict and living in fear had particular impacts on women and girls - altering their posture, menstruation, visibility and core sense of self. But her book is not an unbroken litany of misery - far from it. It's a fascinating and illuminating insight into a warm family life and a rich imagination. The details and small behaviours she describes bring Srinagar vividly to life. Farah explains why she wrote Rumours of Spring; how she had to wait until she was ready; the challenges in revealing very personal aspects of her own and her family's lives; and how to make her individual story gripping for people who've never met her - her readers. Farah is from Kashmir and these days lives in Delhi. Rumours of Spring is published by Harper Collins India.And we also hear from Auriel Roe, who joins us from Spain, where she runs The Memoirist website and international memoir publisher Dogberry Books. She loves publishing other people's memoirs and is deluged with submissions. However, too many of them are boring or unremittingly miserable. Auriel is on a quest for relatable personal stories with at least of tinge of humour. Which does not mean that they cannot be serious, but does hope for some self-awareness.We also talk about David Attenborough, Douglas Adams and Mark Carwardine (Last Chance to See), Berthold Brecht, Black Lives Matter, Joan Didion (The Year of Magical Thinking), Hisham Matar (The Return), Suad Amiry (Sharon and My Mother-in-Law), Stephen Fry, Thomas Bewick, Oliver Postgate (Seeing Things), Bagpuss, The Clangers, Nogging the Nog, Christine Adams and Michael McMahon (Miss Savidge Moves Her House), George Orwell, Joseph O'Neill (Blood-Dark Track: A Family History), Grace Jones (I'll Never Write My Memoirs), Primo Levi and Basharat Peer (Curfewed Night).We'd Like A Word is a podcast & radio show from authors Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan. We talk with writers, readers, editors, agents, celebrities, talkers, poets, publishers, booksellers, audiobook creators about books - fiction & non-fiction. We go out on various radio & podcast platforms. Our website is www.wedlikeaword.com - which is where you'll find information about Paul & Steve & our guests. We're also on Twitter @wedlikeaword & Facebook @wedlikeaword & our email is wedlikeaword@gmail.com - & yes, we are slightly embarrassed by the missing apostrophes. We like to hear from you - your questions, thoughts, ideas, guest or book suggestions. Perhaps you'd like to come on We'd Like A Word in person, to chat, review, meet writers or read out passages from books. And if you're still stuck for something to read, may we recommend Blackwatertown by Paul Waters or The Diabolical Club by Stevyn Colgan.

  • Writing Memoirs (part 3): Farah Bashir & Auriel Roe talk to We'd Like A Word presenters Paul Waters and Stevyn Colgan about what makes a good memoir. Farah Bashir's new book, Rumours of Spring, is about her girlhood growing up in Kashmir during an insurgency and severe security crackdown. Her family home was repeatedly searched by the army, a relative shot dead, a schoolfriend attacked with acid and her family life, education and local traditions radically disrupted. Farah writes about how the conflict and living in fear had particular impacts on women and girls - altering their posture, menstruation, visibility and core sense of self. But her book is not an unbroken litany of misery - far from it. It's a fascinating and illuminating insight into a warm family life and a rich imagination. The details and small behaviours she describes bring Srinagar vividly to life. Farah explains why she wrote Rumours of Spring; how she had to wait until she was ready; the challenges in revealing very personal aspects of her own and her family's lives; and how to make her individual story gripping for people who've never met her - her readers. Farah is from Kashmir and these days lives in Delhi. Rumours of Spring is published by Harper Collins India.And we also hear from Auriel Roe, who joins us from Spain, where she runs The Memoirist website and international memoir publisher Dogberry Books. She loves publishing other people's memoirs and is deluged with submissions. However, too many of them are boring or unremittingly miserable. Auriel is on a quest for relatable personal stories with at least of tinge of humour. Which does not mean that they cannot be serious, but does hope for some self-awareness.We also talk about David Attenborough, Douglas Adams and Mark Carwardine (Last Chance to See), Berthold Brecht, Black Lives Matter, Joan Didion (The Year of Magical Thinking), Hisham Matar (The Return), Suad Amiry (Sharon and My Mother-in-Law), Stephen Fry, Thomas Bewick, Oliver Postgate (Seeing Things), Bagpuss, The Clangers, Nogging the Nog, Christine Adams and Michael McMahon (Miss Savidge Moves Her House), George Orwell, Joseph O'Neill (Blood-Dark Track: A Family History), Grace Jones (I'll Never Write My Memoirs), Primo Levi and Basharat Peer (Curfewed Night).We'd Like A Word is a podcast & radio show from authors Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan. We talk with writers, readers, editors, agents, celebrities, talkers, poets, publishers, booksellers, audiobook creators about books - fiction & non-fiction. We go out on various radio & podcast platforms. Our website is www.wedlikeaword.com - which is where you'll find information about Paul & Steve & our guests. We're also on Twitter @wedlikeaword & Facebook @wedlikeaword & our email is wedlikeaword@gmail.com - & yes, we are slightly embarrassed by the missing apostrophes. We like to hear from you - your questions, thoughts, ideas, guest or book suggestions. Perhaps you'd like to come on We'd Like A Word in person, to chat, review, meet writers or read out passages from books. And if you're still stuck for something to read, may we recommend Blackwatertown by Paul Waters or The Diabolical Club by Stevyn Colgan.

  • Writers Weekend festival (part 1): Novelist & poet Reshma Ruia, literary agent John Baker of Bell Lomax Moreton, writing mentor Adrienne Dines & festival organiser Sara Gangai all talk to We'd Like A Word presenters Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan about the UK's prime gathering for unrepresented authors to find an agent. This year the festival is online because of Covid. But the author-agent meet-ups are happening as much as ever. And there'll be all sorts of other attractions - celebrity author talks, workshops, writers' circles, plot development, how to improve your writing & discussions. The main Writers Weekend is 24-27 June, 2021 - with the Writers’ Circles starting 16 May. You'll find details here https://writersweekend.uk - the slogan is "from inspiration to publication".

    In this episode we hear all about the Writers Weekend; about authors who have found agents at past events; how to use condiments to solve your plotting problems (Cruet Wars... Game of Spoons... at the DWLC - the Desperate Writers Lunch Club); the worst pitch that agent John Baker ever received; what an agent like him is looking for; how to get publishers interested in your comic or fantasy novel; the challenges of writing a multicultural book when authors are accused of cultural appropriation; & how to ensure your story has "emotional geology".

    And we also hear about these authors: Lissa Evans, Helen Fields, MG leonard, Tracey Corderoy, Derek Miller, Robert Fabbri, Alison Sherlock, Claire Dyer, Tammye Huf, Terry Pratchett, Douglas Adams, Jasper Fforde, Ben Aaronovitch, Joe Abercrombie, CM Waggoner, Gabriela Houston, AM Shine, Esmie Jikiemi-Pearson, David Nobbs, Tom Sharpe, Stella Gibbons, Diana Gabaldon, Chris Riddell, Helen Dennis, Kerry Fisher, John Cleese, Kira-Anne Pelican, Peace Adzo Medie, Ernest Hemmingway, Beverley Birch & Jeanine Cummins.

    We'd Like A Word is a podcast & radio show from authors Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan. We talk with writers, readers, editors, agents, celebrities, talkers, poets, publishers, booksellers, audiobook creators about books - fiction & non-fiction. We go out on various radio & podcast platforms. Our website is www.wedlikeaword.com -  which is where you'll find information about Paul & Steve & our guests.  We're also on Twitter @wedlikeaword & Facebook @wedlikeaword & our email is wedlikeaword@gmail.com - & yes, we are slightly embarrassed by the missing apostrophes. We like to hear from you - your questions, thoughts, ideas, guest or book suggestions. Perhaps you'd like to come on We'd Like A Word in person, to chat, review, meet writers or read out passages from books. And if you're still stuck for something to read, may we recommend Blackwatertown by Paul Waters or The Diabolical Club by Stevyn Colgan.

  • Writers Weekend festival (part 2): Novelist & poet Reshma Ruia, literary agent John Baker of Bell Lomax Moreton, writing mentor Adrienne Dines & festival organiser Sara Gangai all talk to We'd Like A Word presenters Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan about the UK's prime gathering for unrepresented authors to find an agent. This year the festival is online because of Covid. But the author-agent meet-ups are happening as much as ever. And there'll be all sorts of other attractions - celebrity author talks, workshops, writers' circles, plot development, how to improve your writing & discussions. The main Writers Weekend is 24-27 June, 2021 - with the Writers’ Circles starting 16 May. You'll find details here https://writersweekend.uk - the slogan is "from inspiration to publication".

    In this episode we hear all about the Writers Weekend; about authors who have found agents at past events; how to use condiments to solve your plotting problems (Cruet Wars... Game of Spoons... at the DWLC - the Desperate Writers Lunch Club); the worst pitch that agent John Baker ever received; what an agent like him is looking for; how to get publishers interested in your comic or fantasy novel; the challenges of writing a multicultural book when authors are accused of cultural appropriation; & how to ensure your story has "emotional geology".

    And we also hear about these authors: Lissa Evans, Helen Fields, MG leonard, Tracey Corderoy, Derek Miller, Robert Fabbri, Alison Sherlock, Claire Dyer, Tammye Huf, Terry Pratchett, Douglas Adams, Jasper Fforde, Ben Aaronovitch, Joe Abercrombie, CM Waggoner, Gabriela Houston, AM Shine, Esmie Jikiemi-Pearson, David Nobbs, Tom Sharpe, Stella Gibbons, Diana Gabaldon, Chris Riddell, Helen Dennis, Kerry Fisher, John Cleese, Kira-Anne Pelican, Peace Adzo Medie, Ernest Hemmingway, Beverley Birch & Jeanine Cummins.

    We'd Like A Word is a podcast & radio show from authors Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan. We talk with writers, readers, editors, agents, celebrities, talkers, poets, publishers, booksellers, audiobook creators about books - fiction & non-fiction. We go out on various radio & podcast platforms. Our website is www.wedlikeaword.com -  which is where you'll find information about Paul & Steve & our guests.  We're also on Twitter @wedlikeaword & Facebook @wedlikeaword & our email is wedlikeaword@gmail.com - & yes, we are slightly embarrassed by the missing apostrophes. We like to hear from you - your questions, thoughts, ideas, guest or book suggestions. Perhaps you'd like to come on We'd Like A Word in person, to chat, review, meet writers or read out passages from books. And if you're still stuck for something to read, may we recommend Blackwatertown by Paul Waters or The Diabolical Club by Stevyn Colgan.

  • Writers Weekend festival (part 3): Novelist & poet Reshma Ruia, literary agent John Baker of Bell Lomax Moreton, writing mentor Adrienne Dines & festival organiser Sara Gangai all talk to We'd Like A Word presenters Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan about the UK's prime gathering for unrepresented authors to find an agent. This year the festival is online because of Covid. But the author-agent meet-ups are happening as much as ever. And there'll be all sorts of other attractions - celebrity author talks, workshops, writers' circles, plot development, how to improve your writing & discussions. The main Writers Weekend is 24-27 June, 2021 - with the Writers’ Circles starting 16 May. You'll find details here https://writersweekend.uk - the slogan is "from inspiration to publication".

    In this episode we hear all about the Writers Weekend; about authors who have found agents at past events; how to use condiments to solve your plotting problems (Cruet Wars... Game of Spoons... at the DWLC - the Desperate Writers Lunch Club); the worst pitch that agent John Baker ever received; what an agent like him is looking for; how to get publishers interested in your comic or fantasy novel; the challenges of writing a multicultural book when authors are accused of cultural appropriation; & how to ensure your story has "emotional geology". 

    And we also hear about these authors: Lissa Evans, Helen Fields, MG leonard, Tracey Corderoy, Derek Miller, Robert Fabbri, Alison Sherlock, Claire Dyer, Tammye Huf, Terry Pratchett, Douglas Adams, Jasper Fforde, Ben Aaronovitch, Joe Abercrombie, CM Waggoner, Gabriela Houston, AM Shine, Esmie Jikiemi-Pearson, David Nobbs, Tom Sharpe, Stella Gibbons, Diana Gabaldon, Chris Riddell, Helen Dennis, Kerry Fisher, John Cleese, Kira-Anne Pelican, Peace Adzo Medie, Ernest Hemmingway, Beverley Birch & Jeanine Cummins.

    We'd Like A Word is a podcast & radio show from authors Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan. We talk with writers, readers, editors, agents, celebrities, talkers, poets, publishers, booksellers, audiobook creators about books - fiction & non-fiction. We go out on various radio & podcast platforms. Our website is www.wedlikeaword.com -  which is where you'll find information about Paul & Steve & our guests.  We're also on Twitter @wedlikeaword & Facebook @wedlikeaword & our email is wedlikeaword@gmail.com - & yes, we are slightly embarrassed by the missing apostrophes. We like to hear from you - your questions, thoughts, ideas, guest or book suggestions. Perhaps you'd like to come on We'd Like A Word in person, to chat, review, meet writers or read out passages from books. And if you're still stuck for something to read, may we recommend Blackwatertown by Paul Waters or The Diabolical Club by Stevyn Colgan.

  • Literary agents (part 1): Piers Blofeld of Sheil Land & James Wills, managing director of Watson Little discuss with We'd Like A Word presenters, Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan, how to get an agent for fiction or non-fiction, how to keep an agent, & mistakes to avoid. They also dish up some behind the scenes gossip.

    Piers has been the agent for Nadine Dorries, Cath Quinn, Jamie Thomson & Pizza Express. No, really. The Pizza Express Cookbook. He's also Stevyn Colgan's agent. James is agent for Christopher Fowler, Martin Edwards, Alex Pavesi, footballer Jamie Carragher & the great Alan Moore - crime fiction, thrillers, sports star & graphic novels. He's also the agent who sold the audiobook rights for Paul Waters' book, Blackwatertown, to WF Howes. (Patrick Moy is the audiobook narrator. You should have a listen.)  On this episode we hear about Piers Blofeld's link to the Bond villain with whom he shares a surname, from authors Jo Jakeman & Allie C Hall, about Henry "Blowers" Blofeld, the price of getting an agent's name wrong in your pitch letter, diversity, comedians called David getting book deals (yes Davids Baddiel & Walliams, we mean you), books on spontaneous combustion, dropping a tea-soaked gingernut on Paul's phone, why your pitch letter should be "half long & twice strong", changing book titles or not (David Alderton - Fat Dog Thin & Freya Berry - The Dictator's Wife), author relationships with mega-publishers (like Penguin Random House, Harper Collins or Hachette) v smaller but perfectly formed ones (like Orenda or Viper), how good storytelling is not the same as good writing (& far rarer), how winning awards may not change your life, why you need an agent to be your bad cop, & how agents cope with rejection. (You see? It's not just authors who go through it.)

    We'd Like A Word is a podcast and radio show from authors Paul Waters and Stevyn Colgan. We talk with writers, readers, editors, agents, celebrities, talkers, poets, publishers, booksellers, audiobook creators about books - fiction and non-fiction. We go out on various radio and podcast platforms. Our website is www.wedlikeaword.com -  which is where you'll find information about Paul and Steve and our guests.  We're also on Twitter @wedlikeaword and Facebook @wedlikeaword and our email is wedlikeaword@gmail.com - and yes, we are slightly embarrassed by the missing apostrophes. We like to hear from you - your questions, thoughts, ideas, guest or book suggestions. Perhaps you'd like to come on We'd Like A Word in person, to chat, review, meet writers or read out passages from books. And if you're still stuck for something to read, may we recommend Blackwatertown by Paul Waters or The Diabolical Club by Stevyn Colgan.

  • Literary agents (part 2): Piers Blofeld of Sheil Land & James Wills, managing director of Watson Little discuss with We'd Like A Word presenters, Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan, how to get an agent for fiction or non-fiction, how to keep an agent, & mistakes to avoid. They also dish up some behind the scenes gossip.

    Piers has been the agent for Nadine Dorries, Cath Quinn, Jamie Thomson & Pizza Express. No, really. The Pizza Express Cookbook. He's also Stevyn Colgan's agent. James is agent for Christopher Fowler, Martin Edwards, Alex Pavesi, footballer Jamie Carragher & the great Alan Moore - crime fiction, thrillers, sports star & graphic novels. He's also the agent who sold the audiobook rights for Paul Waters' book, Blackwatertown, to WF Howes. (Patrick Moy is the audiobook narrator. You should have a listen.)  On this episode we hear about Piers Blofeld's link to the Bond villain with whom he shares a surname, from authors Jo Jakeman & Allie C Hall, about Henry "Blowers" Blofeld, the price of getting an agent's name wrong in your pitch letter, diversity, comedians called David getting book deals (yes Davids Baddiel & Walliams, we mean you), books on spontaneous combustion, dropping a tea-soaked gingernut on Paul's phone, why your pitch letter should be "half long & twice strong", changing book titles or not (David Alderton - Fat Dog Thin & Freya Berry - The Dictator's Wife), author relationships with mega-publishers (like Penguin Random House, Harper Collins or Hachette) v smaller but perfectly formed ones (like Orenda or Viper), how good storytelling is not the same as good writing (& far rarer), how winning awards may not change your life, why you need an agent to be your bad cop, & how agents cope with rejection. (You see? It's not just authors who go through it.)

    We'd Like A Word is a podcast and radio show from authors Paul Waters and Stevyn Colgan. We talk with writers, readers, editors, agents, celebrities, talkers, poets, publishers, booksellers, audiobook creators about books - fiction and non-fiction. We go out on various radio and podcast platforms. Our website is www.wedlikeaword.com -  which is where you'll find information about Paul and Steve and our guests.  We're also on Twitter @wedlikeaword and Facebook @wedlikeaword and our email is wedlikeaword@gmail.com - and yes, we are slightly embarrassed by the missing apostrophes. We like to hear from you - your questions, thoughts, ideas, guest or book suggestions. Perhaps you'd like to come on We'd Like A Word in person, to chat, review, meet writers or read out passages from books. And if you're still stuck for something to read, may we recommend Blackwatertown by Paul Waters or The Diabolical Club by Stevyn Colgan.

  • Literary agents (part 3): Piers Blofeld of Sheil Land & James Wills, managing director of Watson Little discuss with We'd Like A Word presenters, Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan, how to get an agent for fiction or non-fiction, how to keep an agent, & mistakes to avoid. They also dish up some behind the scenes gossip.

    Piers has been the agent for Nadine Dorries, Cath Quinn, Jamie Thomson & Pizza Express. No, really. The Pizza Express Cookbook. He's also Stevyn Colgan's agent. James is agent for Christopher Fowler, Martin Edwards, Alex Pavesi, footballer Jamie Carragher & the great Alan Moore - crime fiction, thrillers, sports star & graphic novels. He's also the agent who sold the audiobook rights for Paul Waters' book, Blackwatertown, to WF Howes. (Patrick Moy is the audiobook narrator. You should have a listen.)

    On this episode we hear about Piers Blofeld's link to the Bond villain with whom he shares a surname, from authors Jo Jakeman & Allie C Hall, about Henry "Blowers" Blofeld, the price of getting an agent's name wrong in your pitch letter, diversity, comedians called David getting book deals (yes Davids Baddiel & Walliams, we mean you), books on spontaneous combustion, dropping a tea-soaked gingernut on Paul's phone, why your pitch letter should be "half long & twice strong", changing book titles or not (David Alderton - Fat Dog Thin & Freya Berry - The Dictator's Wife), author relationships with mega-publishers (like Penguin Random House, Harper Collins or Hachette) v smaller but perfectly formed ones (like Orenda or Viper), how good storytelling is not the same as good writing (& far rarer), how winning awards may not change your life, why you need an agent to be your bad cop, & how agents cope with rejection. (You see? It's not just authors who go through it.)

    We'd Like A Word is a podcast and radio show from authors Paul Waters and Stevyn Colgan. We talk with writers, readers, editors, agents, celebrities, talkers, poets, publishers, booksellers, audiobook creators about books - fiction and non-fiction. We go out on various radio and podcast platforms. Our website is www.wedlikeaword.com -  which is where you'll find information about Paul and Steve and our guests.  We're also on Twitter @wedlikeaword and Facebook @wedlikeaword and our email is wedlikeaword@gmail.com - and yes, we are slightly embarrassed by the missing apostrophes. We like to hear from you - your questions, thoughts, ideas, guest or book suggestions. Perhaps you'd like to come on We'd Like A Word in person, to chat, review, meet writers or read out passages from books. And if you're still stuck for something to read, may we recommend Blackwatertown by Paul Waters or The Diabolical Club by Stevyn Colgan.

  • YA young adult books (part 1) with Sarwat Chadda & Shiulie Ghosh: Sarwat & Shiulie discuss with We'd Like A Word presenters, Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan, how to write & market YA (young adult) and mid-lit books. Sarwat is the author of City of the Plague God published by Rick Riordan Presents. He's also the author of The Templar Chronicles (trilogy) (coming out - again - soon with a new part 3), The Ash Mistry series, The Dragon's Eye, Mission Atomic, The Devil's Kiss, The City of Death, and Dark Goddess. He also writes the animated The Legend of Hanuman series for Disney Hotstars. And he has a tendency to get into trouble with rhinos & other occasionally aggressive species. Shiulie is the author of the Daughter of Kali trilogy (& prequel), the Chronicles of Cetaea duology, Mark of the Djinn, The Prince and his Thief, and Soul Quest - some of them published by Peach Publishing. She's also the renowned ITN, Al Jazeera, BBC & TRT TV foreign correspondent & presenter. She honed her diplomatic skills talking herself out of tight corners in war zones.

    Shiulie & Sarwat discuss paranormal fantasy; gritty urban coming-of-age romance; diversity & appropriation in representation & writing; creating an anti-Indiana Jones hero, mythology & varying value systems; Ray Harryhausen's Sinbad adventures; making a place for kickass mothers in YA fiction; how to & whether to tackle tough issues like sex, violence, drugs, death, racism, cancer, incest, murder & rape; and who exactly is this goddess Kali they both find so galvanising?

    We also hear about other inspirational authors, agents & phenomena including Natasha Ngan, Olivia Chadha, SA Chakraborty, Sonia Land, Piers Blofeld, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Rick Riordan, Grayson Perry, Angie Thomas, John Green, Ray Harryhausen, Kali, Peter L Barnes and Indiana Jones.

    We'd Like A Word is a podcast and radio show from authors Paul Waters and Stevyn Colgan. We talk with writers, readers, editors, agents, celebrities, talkers, poets, publishers, booksellers, audiobook creators about books - fiction and non-fiction. We go out on various radio and podcast platforms. Our website is www.wedlikeaword.com -  which is where you'll find information about Paul and Steve and our guests.  We're also on Twitter @wedlikeaword and Facebook @wedlikeaword and our email is wedlikeaword@gmail.com - and yes, we are slightly embarrassed by the missing apostrophes. We like to hear from you - your questions, thoughts, ideas, guest or book suggestions. Perhaps you'd like to come on We'd Like A Word in person, to chat, review, meet writers or read out passages from books. And if you're still stuck for something to read, may we recommend Blackwatertown by Paul Waters or The Diabolical Club by Stevyn Colgan.

  • YA young adult books (part 2) with Sarwat Chadda & Shiulie Ghosh: Sarwat & Shiulie discuss with We'd Like A Word presenters, Paul Waters & Stevyn Colgan, how to write & market YA (young adult) and mid-lit books. Sarwat is the author of City of the Plague God published by Rick Riordan Presents. He's also the author of The Templar Chronicles (trilogy) (coming out - again - soon with a new part 3), The Ash Mistry series, The Dragon's Eye, Mission Atomic, The Devil's Kiss, The City of Death, and Dark Goddess. He also writes the animated The Legend of Hanuman series for Disney Hotstars. And he has a tendency to get into trouble with rhinos & other occasionally aggressive species. Shiulie is the author of the Daughter of Kali trilogy (& prequel), the Chronicles of Cetaea duology, Mark of the Djinn, The Prince and his Thief, and Soul Quest - some of them published by Peach Publishing. She's also the renowned ITN, Al Jazeera, BBC & TRT TV foreign correspondent & presenter. She honed her diplomatic skills talking herself out of tight corners in war zones.

    Shiulie & Sarwat discuss paranormal fantasy; gritty urban coming-of-age romance; diversity & appropriation in representation & writing; creating an anti-Indiana Jones hero, mythology & varying value systems; Ray Harryhausen's Sinbad adventures; making a place for kickass mothers in YA fiction; how to & whether to tackle tough issues like sex, violence, drugs, death, racism, cancer, incest, murder & rape; and who exactly is this goddess Kali they both find so galvanising?

    We also hear about other inspirational authors, agents & phenomena including Natasha Ngan, Olivia Chadha, SA Chakraborty, Sonia Land, Piers Blofeld, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Rick Riordan, Grayson perry, Angie Thomas, John Green, Ray Harryhausen, Kali, Peter L Barnes and Indiana Jones.

    We'd Like A Word is a podcast and radio show from authors Paul Waters and Stevyn Colgan. We talk with writers, readers, editors, agents, celebrities, talkers, poets, publishers, booksellers, audiobook creators about books - fiction and non-fiction. We go out on various radio and podcast platforms. Our website is www.wedlikeaword.com -  which is where you'll find information about Paul and Steve and our guests.  We're also on Twitter @wedlikeaword and Facebook @wedlikeaword and our email is wedlikeaword@gmail.com - and yes, we are slightly embarrassed by the missing apostrophes. We like to hear from you - your questions, thoughts, ideas, guest or book suggestions. Perhaps you'd like to come on We'd Like A Word in person, to chat, review, meet writers or read out passages from books. And if you're still stuck for something to read, may we recommend Blackwatertown by Paul Waters or The Diabolical Club by Stevyn Colgan.