Tapestry – how it all began

Hey there,

I hope your day is going well so far.

Last week I posted that my short story collection, Tapestry, will be making its way into the world towards the end of September. (Eeep!) I made the decision to take the plunge just over a year ago. This is how it all began…

I first started to read short stories when I had my twins and found reading a whole book in any reasonable timescale went out the window. (A few pages every three weeks does not help you keep tabs on the plot, does it?) When I started to write seriously, it seemed natural to try short stories first. It seems natural too, therefore, that my first foray into self-publishing is of a collection of short stories. (Did I say eeep already?)

I decided that, for the collection, I wanted to write stories about love – love in different guises, whether romantic love, familial love or obsessive love. I found it was an opportunity for me, in some stories, to explore the darker sides of the emotion. By and large my novels are “hopeful ever after”. It was very freeing to take an “anything goes” approach (plot-wise) in my stories and interesting to explore how people react in more difficult situations.

When I started writing the stories, I wrote more than I knew I would use for the collection so I could see which ones sat together best. I’d previously completed the London School of Journalism’s short story writing course by distance learning, so I’d had some positive feedback about my stories and writing style in this medium. A couple of the stories I produced for the course are actually included in the collection.

I’ve chosen twelve stories, a mix of happy and less happy tales. Some of the characters appear in more than one story – I wanted to see what happened to them before or after their first story in the collection. I hope, if you read it, you find you wanted that too!

So, I had my stories and that’s all very well, but it was only the first step in the process. Cue the search for an editor, someone I’d never worked with before. What if it turned out that my stories weren’t good enough to see the light of day when a professional editor looked at them?

If you’d like to know how I went about finding an editor and my experience of the editing process, I’ll be posting that next week, so please come back and join me!

How do you feel about short stories compared to novels? If you have children, did you manage to read novels when they were small? If so, HOW?

I’d love to hear from you, so if you’d like to comment, please do so.

Much love,

Elle. 🙂 xx


In hope, in pain,

we lose, we gain,

but always and forever

the human heart braves life

in light and in shade.




6 thoughts on “Tapestry – how it all began

  1. Lots of luck with this! I love short stories, I wish more of my favourite authors wrote them. I’ve written a few hundred shorts in the past four years. I find I read them more if I can’t commit to a big read, for reasons which can range from being in a depressive state to being swept of my feet! I’m looking forward to reading your collection, Elle and love the theme you’ve chosen xx

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I really like short stories, too, Elle, and am really looking forward to reading your collection. I have times when I find it hard to find the time or concentration for novels or even novellas and I’ll go back to short stories then. I love collections of shorts by the same author too and read a number of those last Christmas, as that was another busy time and it was great to dip in and out, in between individual stories, without losing the thread as you might in a novel. I also enjoy writing short stories and the WRs published an anthology of them last year for charity and we hope to do the same in 2016. I think we found it challenging and fun in equal measure, as it’s a very different skill from novel writing. I’ve just managed to crack the short story market for women’s magazines, after quite a few attempts, too. However, you are restricted by the magazine’s ‘brand’ and editorial preferences. As you say, writing our own collection gives you free rein to write what you want and not necessary have to have the HEA or HFN ending. Can’t wait to see the range of your collection and I’m sure it will be a huge success. Jo x

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for your lovely comment, Jo! Congratulations on cracking the women’s magazines market, that’s difficult to do so very well done. 🙂

      I enjoyed reading Winter Tales – you guys put together a really good collection so I’m looking forward to the next one in 2016. 🙂 xx


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