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Self-gluing at the check-out? Clare Shaw explores a new low in shopping

Clare Shaw

Could you tell us about your short story in one sentence, for the readers who haven’t read it (yet!)?

Nerdy Gillian escapes from her clingy mother to go on a climate change march with a pocket full of glue for her protest - what can possibly go wrong?


Have you always been interested in (comic) writing, or did you fall into it unexpectedly? Have you ever kept a teenage diary?

I have been writing all my life and had books published but fell into comic writing unexpectedly to me but not to others who tell me I have always been a witty woman - inclusion in this book makes it official! I did keep a teenage diary but luckily that was destroyed long ago.


We would love to hear about where you get ideas for your wondrous wit? Do you have any tips you could impart to aspiring witty writers?

Life is hilarious, people are funny. You only have to sit on a bus or in a pub and listen to conversation and you will get ideas. My idea came from going on climate marches and thinking about what could go wrong. My characters come from real life but exaggerated (but not much)


Speaking of which, where does your writing magic happen?

I write at a desk by the window overlooking an oak tree in the garden. In the summer, I write in a shed. On Sundays I write in The King's Arms with a group of writers - drinking and writing are my two favourite occupations so that works well for me.


What is the best piece of content by a witty woman you have read/watched/listened to/experienced recently?

Jenny Bean, Calamity Queen in this anthology.


Finally, what does being published by CWIP mean to you? Do you have any advice for other witty writers?

I was thrilled to be included in this anthology - I had never before set out to write anything that was out and out funny, although there has always been an element of humour in my writing. It has given me the confidence to write a humorous novel which I have just finished. 



Helen says “I am ‘natural humour’ fan also – you know what they say ‘she who contrives, laughs last’"

Clare's short story "Glue" appears in The Book of Witty Women available to purchase now.

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