I’m Maria Donovan, a writer of fiction, and lover of languages. The ones I’m best in are English and Dutch. I’m currently most keen on learning Welsh. If I could, I’d learn them all, from Chinese to BSL. Every language opens up channels in the mind.

The most recent posts will be in the blog section. Writing fiction takes up most of my time so I only squeeze out one or maybe two posts a month. I never did get round to compiling that newsletter etc.

I only (mainly) use my own photographs and sometimes the posts are about nature and sometimes about the writing process. Occasionally, I post original flash fiction, particularly if it’s already been published and I have the rights.

I love the feeling of having finished something! But I like writing fiction most of all.

Now and then I like to pin something here for your attention and to remind myself that – I did that! Books are on the books page.

So many ideas hit me: I am training myself to pick a project and finish. Right now my aim is to finish my second collection of short stories and then I’m looking forward to writing another novel.

Bridport Prize 2019 (19 OCTOBER)

Winners slide Bridport Prize FF
Winner’s Slide Bridport Prize Flash Fiction

‘Aftermath’ wins First Prize for Flash Fiction, and the Dorset Award

Winning the Bridport Prize was a dream come true. It’s an International prize that has been on my radar for years.

The bonus was the Dorset Award (for the highest placed entry from a person who lives in the county). It comes with the loan of this remarkable statue. It’s a very big pen.

The Dorset Award is sponsored by The Book Shop, Bridport

‘Aftermath’ is in the Bridport Prize anthology 2019

Latest Book

The Chicken Soup Murder

Finalist for the Dundee International Book Prize

I attempted to write this novel in real time and it contains various real-life events that affect the characters. It’s not something I will try again in a hurry but the method really helped me when I was getting back to work a year or two after the death of my husband.

Yes, there’s a puzzle here, but it’s also about grieving and the meaning of family. It’s even a bit funny.

I’m still amazed that something that takes so long to write can be read so quickly.

The Chicken Soup Murder cover_Layout 1
Debut novel – crime and mystery with a difference

‘A short, seemingly simple, yet complex and rather wonderful novel about a young boy coming to terms with life, death, and everything in-between’
Liz Robinson, ‘Love Reading

The Chicken Soup Murder reaches the fiction shortlist for

‘a great story, told with sensitivity, and a first class eye for comedy’

‘an entertaining thriller in which a young teenage boy learns about grief, acceptance and the way the world works’

‘great comedy, exciting developments
and very moving moments’
Fanny Blake, Daily Mail 

‘A thoroughly original, startling and very good novel indeed’

Fay Weldon