Sci-fi Blog Coming to a galaxy near you, just not yet…

Been working hard all day to launch a brand new blog which explores the real world inspiration behind the world of fantasy and Sci-fi… and yet despite my best efforts it still isn’t quite ready! Sorry!

So instead I would l like to invite you to check out my Sci-fi page on Pinterest. If you are a Star Wars fan or Sci-fi fan you are going to love this page. You may need to sign up to Pinterest to love it fully though!

Follow the link……/alfred-duff-loves-sci-fi/

#scary #starwars #snowbeast

snow monster from Hoth

Imagine that chasing you!



Look away now!

Look away now if your not at all interested in writing, I don’t want to bore you with the good stuff  I found today!

I have discovered a curious website that I think could be quite useful for writers, authors, bloggers etc.

You probably already use phrases and expressions in your writing everyday, but I  recently realised just how much a handy phrase or expression can save you in terms of words and effort, by cutting out needless explanation and over-amplification and getting to the point – fast! Especially if its dialogue.  A phrase can be a quick way to sum up or emphasise what your character is driving at, or feeling. After all, you don’t want to “go around the houses” when it comes to getting your point across to the reader! If you are like me you sometimes get stuck. You know there is that perfect phrase or expression out there to sum up exactly what you are trying to say… but you just can’t “put your finger on it” at the time.

I could go on and on about this… but I know you’re pretty smart and I don’t want to “Labour the point!” so here’s the link…

“expressions and sayings”

And one more… for all you literature geeks like me. This website is more heavy duty than the first and I haven’t figured it out completely yet, but it looks good so far. Let me know your thoughts…

“Phrase finder

#writing #sayings


Excuse me for being random! but someone I know sent me this rather lovely photo which I promised to publish ages ago. I admit I had forgot about it, but here it is! I think it was worth the wait…

Alfred Duff river by night

From ebooks to paper books…

Hi, spent some of yesterday in a meeting about turning my ebooks into paperbacks to make them more accessible, something I’ve wanted to do for a while now. We are using a website called Createspace which after a bit of head scratching seems quite straight forward to use, and at the end of it all I should have two books in my series which can be ordered on Amazon, in print.  I will keep you informed of our progress!


To celebrate I thought I’d upload this picture I took in a rare bookshop down a place called Lewes, in East Sussex (UK). I was there a few days ago taking snaps on my phone which attracted some mildly disapproving looks from the other customers but I bravely pressed on just for you guys…

I would love to see my books on these shelves one day!


Rare Books

Rare Books

Alfred Duff Rare Books 2

Check out my pinterest account for more pics..

Introducing your very own all powerful notebook…

Want to write a story but don’t know where to start?

Get yourself a notebook and just start by making notes… doesn’t matter what order your ideas come out in, just write them down as and when they come to you!

The importance of your own notes

The importance of your own notes

Whole scenes and chapters can start from just a short piece of dialogue or from a place you can see in your mind’s eye. Stories often grow from very small acorns and evolve and evolve… until the last chapter is written. Don’t expect to have all the answers from the outset. Planning a story from the beginning to end is difficult and you don’t need the pressure! Things don’t always turn out as you expect and you may want to change direction halfway through anyhow!

But what is important: is that all your great ideas do make it into your story! Keep your notebook handy throughout the day, you never know when a great idea will come to you, and chances are you will have forgotten it by the end of the day! Don’t worry about spelling or grammar just get your ideas down on paper in no particular order. You can organise and make sense of them later!

Sketching your ideas out in your notebook helps as well. For instance: I always sketch out buildings if they are heavily involved in the storyline. I also draw out rough floor plans so I can keep track of who is where at what time, and make sure there is no continuity errors for example. Don’t worry if you are a rubbish artist, just keep it simple and draw stick-men if you have to! You can add labels if what you have drawn is liable to confuse you later. No one else is going to see your handy work – Your notebook is for your eyes only!

You will hopefully find that in time you have amassed quite a collection of notes and ideas, which will help you join the dots of your story a lot easier than staring at a blank Word document and trying to have great ideas as you go!

Once you make a habit of using a notebook you will find it to be a great writing aid!

Hope that helps all you budding writers!

Please like my page for more updates!

Alfred Duff

#notes #ideas #writing #story #notebook #creative


A lot of research goes into period stories, luckily I love history anyway, so I found it quite easy when I started creating the world of The Warspite Series, which is set in the late medieval period and early renaissance era, depending if the story takes place in the North or the South.

In the books I dabble with the idea of gunpowder (among many other things) and the impact it would have on a feudal world of witchcraft and religion. I find there is so much going on in the stories its difficult to write an overview. This is what I came up with today, and published on Wattpad:

“The fractious “Old Globe” is in a time of shifting ideology. The pious North is held in the grasp of a dark religion which honours a vengeful god and lives under the cruel shadow of the Fearnaught; a ruthless religious cult not to be crossed. The rebellious South, made up of breakaway city states and kingdoms, concerns itself with the dawn of a new renaissance, ushered in by the Warspite; a secretive band of men and women, who have stood as guardians against the Fearnaught for three long centuries… until now…”


Researching the past…

…Its fair to say I have amassed quite a collection of history books in my time… when I was at college I bought one a week and I still can’t walk past the history section in a bookshop without stopping for an hour… or two!

#research #books #history