They’re more far-reaching than you think

Photo by Tingey Injury Law Firm on Unsplash

Picture the scene: You’ve spent months judging hundreds of short stories, and finally you’re in a position to announce first, second, and third place winners in your international short story competition.

This is one of the best moments of administering a writing competition. Contacting the writers to congratulate them on…


Just take things one step (word) at a time

Photo by Sébastien Goldberg on Unsplash

A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step

Lao Tzu

One of the magazines I write for is Country Walking. It’s a UK publication whose aim is to encourage readers to get out and explore the great British countryside. …


How splitting your writing time between Manager and Maker time can revolutionise your productivity

Photo by Vince Veras on Unsplash

In the UK, on Sunday 31st October, something magical happens. British Summer Time ends and the clocks go back. We all get an extra hour of time. So, what will you do with yours?

Most of us would love more time to write, but waking up at 2 am on…


How our dog-walking clothing choices need to mimic those of our dog’s coat

Photo by Mitchell Orr on Unsplash

The one thing I admire about dogs is the way that they are always ready to go. Go anywhere. At any time, any place anywhere. …


How securing a publishing contract for your non-fiction book is like going on a date

Photo by Shardar Tarikul Islam on Unsplash

A non-fiction book is easier to sell than a novel. Firstly, with a novel you have to write the whole book first. Whereas with a non-fiction book, it’s possible to secure a publishing contract with a traditional publisher, simply by writing a proposal and outline of the book you’d like…


How urgent eye surgery changed the way I take photographs

Photo by v2osk on Unsplash

It’s always the case, isn’t it? You don’t appreciate what you have until you’ve lost it … or might lose it. …


All good things must come to an end

Dogs know. They just know. Mind you, the packed suitcase was a bit of a giveaway.

My last day of dog-sitting today. It’s been exhausting… but fun, as I tot up the final stats:

  • over 100,000 steps walked,
  • 42 miles walked,
  • 28 poo bags (with contents) brought back from walks…


The Art of Multi-Tasking

Texting while dog-walking — screenshot © Simon Whaley

Why ever did I think I could do it? Multitask. I mean, I’m a bloke, for heaven’s sake, and it’s a well-known fact that we men can’t multitask.

I thought I was being clever. (More proof if ever any were needed that I’m a man.) My phone pinged. So, naturally…


Food, glorious food

Dogs bowls. © Simon Whaley

Four o’clock is the new five o’clock. How do I know? Betsy told me. Actually, she’s told me every day since I’ve been dog-sitting. Her owners were adamant: Betsy has her dinner at five o’clock. Betsy has other ideas.

They usually start about 4 pm. She comes up and nudges…


Wellies and Wet Dog

The joys of a wet walk. © Simon Whaley

Oh dear. Or rather, Eau dear. The first autumnal storm has arrived, and it’s chucking it down outside. But that doesn’t bother Betsy. She still wants to go out. It’s 7 am. We always go out at 7 am.

And that’s when I remember how lucky dogs are. Always ready…

Simon Whaley

Bestselling author, writer and photographer. UK travel writer. Walker. BBC WeatherWatcher. Blessed to live in the glorious Welsh Borders. www.simonwhaley.co.uk

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