All items: William Cowper

A change of place, finding a new muse, pausing on a London bridge, all can stimulate the writer's imagination again, says John Greening. From a sexual potency operation for W.B.Yeats, to Clive James’ terminal illness, there are many ways to trigger inspiration.

Ali Knight explores the murky depths of the Grand Union Canal in Londonand explains how it inspires her crime fiction.

John Greening takes us to the poetic village of Little Gidding and its nearby literary landmarks.

Miranda Miller introduces us to Henry James’ Lamb House in Rye and its connections with various writers.

Mary Colson takes us to Olney in north Buckinghamshare, her childhood home and the site of an historic friendship between a poet and a slave trader.

Simon Rae takes us to Great Tew in north Oxfordshire, an estate village that began with lofty aspirations but descended to decrepitude.

Mary Colson speaks with John Siddique about the value of children’s non-fiction and the unusual constraints involved in writing it commercially, her love of writing for screen and stage, and the right way to teach writing and nurture children’s voices.