Derek Neale

Derek Neale

Derek Neale is a graduate of UEA’s famous creative writing MA. He subsequently taught both script and fiction writing at UEA for a number of years, while gaining his PhD in creative and critical writing. He has won awards for his short stories, which have appeared in various anthologies and journals, and is the author of several books, chapters, essays and articles about writing, many written in association with The Open University where he is now Senior Lecturer in creative writing. During his time with the OU he has helped design and write a whole new generation of under- and post-graduate writing courses which have been studied by tens of thousands of students. He has recorded interviews with numerous writers about their creative process and also developed the OU’s hugely popular Start Writing Fiction MOOC. His acclaimed novel The Book of Guardians is a ‘detective story about orphans’, an ‘often touching examination of the philosophy of “care”, which tackles head-on the alienation and uncertainty of contemporary lives.’ (Victor Sage). For information about Derek’s writing and teaching see his website: .


Derek Neale in 60 seconds

When did you start writing?

8 Birmingham UK

What do you love about Short Stories?

The challenge of restraint and concision, and their infinite variety.

Do you write in other forms?

Novels, scripts for stage and radio, essays, poetry, academic articles and teaching materials.

What distracts you from writing?

teaching, the need to earn money, a compulsion to procrastinate

Outside of writing, what are your other passions?

I play tennis, I ride a bicycle and I walk a lot

What is your favourite book?

Le Grand Meulnes

Who are your favourite writers?

Angela Carter, Raymond Carver and Ali Smith

Where is your dream location?

Too many to mention - but where mountains or hills meet the sea - North Wales, Southern Spain

What one item would you put into Room 101?

Committee papers

Do you have any advice for new writers?

Anyone can write, only writers can edit

ebooks by Derek Neale:

The Barber's Victim
Derek Neale
£1.59 Added
"Barbers incarcerate you. That's a fact, whatever the hairstyle, however free the expense". A boy is traumatized by what a haircut reveals.
Some Mothers
Derek Neale
£1.59 Added
A mother, recovering on a psychiatric respite ward, recalls her own mother and her 'other mother', and sees vivid glimpses of hope in the past and present
Derek Neale
£1.29 Added
'The habit started when he was seven. A ball, thrown hard and long and with unforgiving inaccuracy by his father, was not retrieved from a neighbour's garden.'
Violin Lessons
Derek Neale
£1.99 Added
A boy happens upon a furniture-maker in his workshop while waiting for his sister to finish her violin lesson; it's a meeting that will change them both.
She Shot My Chimes
Derek Neale
£0.99 Added
'I aim into the night and fire. Crack …' A gun fires in the dark, but who is it? And what is she aiming at?
Land of Their Fathers
Derek Neale
£1.99 Added
This is the story of two characters in a small town in Wales who only meet once, with shocking consequences.

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