About James

How I write

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other stuff


Being a writer isn't just about sitting at your desk dreaming up stories, though sometimes I wish it was. There are other commitments that go with the territory and I've been landed with a few of them over the years - not that I'm really complaining.


In the past I've been chairman of the Society of Authors in Scotland, and I did my time on the Scottish Arts Council's Literature Committee (in the days when they had writers, artists and musicians on their committees).


I was also chairman of the judges for both the Pushkin Prizes and the very first Scottish Arts Council Children's Book Awards (which have now become the Royal Mail Awards and for which, in an unexpected twist, I found myself on the 2008 shortlist!).


But the thing I'm most proud to be part of is the Edinburgh International Book Festival, whose board of directors I'm on. It's the biggest and best-run literary festival in the world, with more than 200,000 people visiting the village of tents that springs up in Charlotte Square each year. I go there every August to recharge my batteries, meet friends, hear people I admire, and chair the events of other authors.


Beyond the world of books I have another writing life - in business, where I've been a copywriter for twenty-five years. Today I work with companies and organisations of all kinds, running workshops about the power of language and stories to help them get their messages across.


With two friends, John Simmons and Stuart Delves, both fellow writers, I also run the Dark Angels programme of what we call 'creative writing in business' courses. These are a sort of antidote to management-speak. We take people away to remote or exciting places for a few days, and help them to become more imaginative and engaging in the way they write at work.


I have another website where I talk about my work in the business world, at www.jauncey.co.uk

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