Michael Pudney

“Pudney’s story brings to light the importance of those who have already lived so much of their story. He reminds us that we are all living our own stories. It’s refreshing, it’s poignant, it’s honorable.” — Lizzie Thornton, editor for Cardigan Press


What genres/age ranges do you typically gravitate toward in your writing?


It all depends on the idea! I would say I am idea-led rather than audience-led when it comes to gravitation. I like the idea of trying out new styles, genres, or target audiences as a way to continue to improve my craft.


However! I once managed to get the ear of a senior publisher at Penguin for three minutes and told her that I write across multiple genres. She basically said that I’m difficult to market because I don’t stick to a niche, so I would have trouble acquiring a core audience because my ideas are so varied with each new project. So . . . yay for me.


What “flavor” of Michael would you say is your story in Byline Legacies?


I’ve never written about a hero before. When I read this out loud for the first time to my partner (she is often my guinea pig), I couldn’t get through it without crying. This piece has meant so much to me at a level I have never experienced before. I do write pieces that are personal, often tweaking actual experiences into my fiction or writing thought pieces with a dash of humour and sprinkling of objectivity to keep myself at a safe distance from it. But this piece cut right through me – it’s the most vulnerable piece I’ve ever written.


How can readers best support you at this time?


Well, I’m currently querying three books. So if any editors or publishers out there are interested…

  1. Offended – a dark comedy on the seven deadly sins of the Internet age. The “sinners” wake up in a cell without knowing how they got there or why. They all recount their lives up to this point and piece together clues to stand any chance of surviving before the timer runs out! It’s like a funny Saw.

  2. By Any Means – this creative nonfiction novel follows a nine-year-old girl’s daring escape from poverty-stricken Albania and her treacherous journey across Europe with her family, to settle in the UK. It then recounts her first years settling into the poorest parts of England, which may have come with new beginnings, but fresh challenges too.

  3. Language, Liberated – a dystopian thriller where language is currency, so only the rich and powerful have a voice. E, a mere “peasant”, must save her rebellious father from the tyrannous regime. But is she capable of more? Can she bring an end to a system designed to gag the 99%?

I have a website which has a bunch of short stories and my blogs, which you can find here: www.michaelpudney.com

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Valerie Hunter

"All the features in Byline Legacies speak to a specific aspect of the writer’s life. But Valerie’s poem, “Elegy for the Poems I Almost Wrote”, hit me sharply because it not only calls the bluff of ev