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Guest Blogs

A blog by ERMurray

Photos, people, experiences, dreams: in other words, ideas. They have to come from somewhere, but it’s not always easy. Let Wordspark inspire you. You never know where it might lead…

Elizabeth Rose Murray lives in West Cork where she writes, fishes, and grows her own vegetables. Her first book for young adults Caramel Hearts (Alma Books) was published June 2016. Her debut novel for children aged 10-12, The Book of Learning - Nine Lives Trilogy 1 (Mercier Press) was chosen as the 2016 Dublin UNESCO City of Literature Citywide Read for Children and the follow-up The Book of Shadows - Nine Lives Trilogy 2 was shortlisted for the 2016 Irish Book Awards. The final installment The Book of Revenge will be published in February 2018.

Elizabeth has poetry and short fiction published in journals across the UK and Ireland - including Ogham Stone, Southword, South Circular, Esc and 3am - and has been shortlisted in various competitions including TV3AM Short Story, Francis MacManus, and Aesthetica Creative Works. She has also performed in Ciudades Paralelas: Station - a live writing installation.

Hoping to encourage new writers, Elizabeth provides manuscript reports and online writing courses through Inkwell Writers and Big Smoke Writing Factory. She is a regular at literary festivals, and offers adult workshops on writing for children and young adults, as well as multiple events and workshops for children and teens.

You can connect with Elizabeth on Twitter @ERMurray, Facebook www.facebook.com/ERMurray.Author or her blog www.ermurray.com

You can follow Elizabeth online, on Twitter and on Facebook.

Photo Prompt (1)

Posted by ERMurray on 11 November 2012.

We’re all drawn to photographs. They’re a powerful medium that resonates with us on many levels as we try to make sense of their content. Our emotions, expectations, beliefs – are all affected, and often by what isn’t in view. Throughout the year, I’ll be posting photo prompts for you to use to inspire a piece. This week, write a poem of less than 20 lines, inspired by the photo shown. I’d love you to see what...

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Unexpected Treasure

Posted by ERMurray on 3 November 2012.

Last year I visited Belfast and was lucky enough to time my visit with a book sale at The Linen Hall library. I picked up three books for £5 – The Poetical Works of Scott, a lovely old edition of Wuthering Heights and The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn as a gift. But inspiration can come from the most surprising of places…Look what I found inside the poetry book: This week, use this...

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Postcard Prompt (1)

Posted by ERMurray on 25 October 2012.

Postcards are a great stimulus for writers. Just ask Michael Kimball! The image or destination on the front can inspire a setting or story –but the message on the back or the journey the postcard has made can be just as exciting. Who bought it? Why? What was their message? Did the postcard ever make it to the intended recipient? What happened to the postcard along the way? Who touched it? Did the postman read...

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What grabs you?

Posted by ERMurray on 19 October 2012.

As people, we naturally filter information about strangers based on our own experiences. It’s an instant, ingrained reaction. So, why not use this natural ability to help devise fresh characters? Sit on a bench or wall somewhere busy, where people are passing through – a street, train station, shopping mall, for instance – and observe for twenty minutes. As people pass, note down their most distinctive features; do they wear a particularly striking piece of...

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