Guest Author: Hugh Roberts – Where Do Your Ideas Come From?


It’s a simple enough question I’ve been asked many times yet, many times, I do have to stop myself from answering the question to have a good think about it first.

When I wrote my first short story, shortly after I started blogging in February 2014, I never gave the thought of where the idea for the story had come from. However, I remember very well the moment the story came to me and since then I’ve talked about it a lot. There I was, ironing the third of seven shirts, and up walked Grace Simmons demanding that I write and publish her story. Somehow, she’d managed to get the story into my head and, within seconds, I’d abandoned the ironing board for the keyboard. An hour later, I’d written Graces’ story, published it on my blog, and the first comment had come in.  Smiling, I thanked Grace, who had long disappeared, and I returned to the ironing board.

Grace Simmons is a character from the first of the short stories, Last Train To Aldwych, which appear in my book, Glimpses. I’ve often wondered if the story was born from an idea or if I was lucky enough to have simply just had one of those ‘spark’ moments when you simply must start writing something down that quickly comes to mind. Fail to write it down and, within minutes, that idea is flying off towards the door of ‘forgotten ideas.’ How many times have we all had that door refuse to open for us?


Many of the other short stories in my book came to me from ideas I’d get after reading writing prompts, participating in writing challenges, or by looking at photos. Even reading comments on a blog post could spark off an idea. Some would come to me within seconds, whereas some ideas would take months to reveal themselves. However, Grace Simmons remains a mystery to me and, even today, I still cannot answer the question ‘where did the idea for Last Train To Aldwych’ come from?

When I sit down and try and think of where the idea for ‘Last Train To Aldwych’ came from, one of the first things that comes to mind is the number of times I had walked past Aldwych underground station in London. The office I worked in was a few minutes’ walk away and I’d often visit the station to buy a cheese and pickle sandwich for lunch. Just inside the station stood a sandwich kiosk that, to this day, made the best cheese and pickles sandwiches I’d ever tasted. I’d enjoy talking to Margaret, the lady that owned the kiosk, and we’d catch up on our everyday lives and try putting the world to rest.


It was a sad day when the station closed and even sadder, that on my way back to the office that day, I lost Margaret’s phone number. On the evening of 30th September 1997, by the time I realised I’d lost the piece of paper she’d written her home phone number on, Margaret and her cheese and pickle sandwiches were long gone.

I tried many avenues to find Margaret, but all to no avail. The mystery of what happened to her is as much a mystery as to where the idea for ‘Last Train To Aldwych’ came from. Then again, did those visits to Margaret plant the idea for the story deep within my mind? She had, after-all, told me stories about her and her family and how they would shelter in Aldwych underground station during the air-raids of World War 2. Have I, at last, solved the mystery of ‘Last Train To Aldwych’?

img_4261About the Author

My name is Hugh W. Roberts, and I live in both the town of Abergavenny and the city of Swansea, South Wales, in the United Kingdom.

I have always enjoyed writing and the fact I suffer from a mild form of dyslexia has not stopped me. Yes, I get things wrong with my reading and writing but I always find those mistakes humorous and always laugh about it. I no longer allow dyslexia get in my way. Now in my fifties, I thought it about time I let my writing become public and becoming a blogger seemed to be the perfect way for me to do this.

I share my life with my civil-partner, John and our Cardigan Welsh Corgi, Toby, who I both cherish with all my heart. I have a very positive outlook on life.

I started writing short stories at school but was never really encouraged to continue writing them. Then, many years later, I discovered blogging and wrote and published several short stories on my blog. They soon became hits and I was encouraged to publish some of the stories in a book. Now, finally, my dream of becoming a published author has come true with the publication of ‘Glimpses’ the first volume of 28 of my short stories. If like me, you enjoy shows such as The Twilight Zone, Tales Of The Unexpected, The Outer Limits and Tales From The Dark Side, then my short stories will hopefully take you on twists and turns to unexpected endings.

If you decide to buy and read my book then I’d be delighted if you would consider leaving a review on Amazon. Reviews help all authors and feedback is vital to improving my writing

I’ve always considered myself as a peoples’ person and I love to hear from anyone. Please do feel free to contact me.

Find Hugh

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Hugh. W. Roberts

After publishing some of his short stories on his blog, Hugh W. Roberts, who suffers from dyslexia, received numerous requests to publish his short stories in a book. Here, at last, are 28 short stories that will take your mind on a rollercoaster of a ride into worlds that conceal unexpected twists and turns. ‘Glimpses’ allows the reader a peek into the lives of everyday people who are about to have life lead them on an unpredicted path. From a mysterious deadly iPad app, to a hole in the fence that is not all it seems, to a strange lipstick that appears to have a life of its own, you will encounter terror, laughter, sadness, shock and many other emotions on journeys which promise a thrilling and gripping climax. If you are a lover of shows such as ‘The Twilight Zone’ and ‘Tales Of The Unexpected’, then you’re in for a real treat with this first collection of short stories from Hugh. Here’s what one reader has already said about the book. “If you’re looking for a thoroughly entertaining read, Glimpses is the book for you. Each story has been cleverly crafted; through Hugh’s wonderful imagination, he has the ability to whisk you away to many different worlds, past, present and future. Every story makes a compelling read and just when you think you know what’s going to happen next, Hugh masterfully reveals a brilliant twist. With bite-size and longer stories, Glimpses is a must-read. I loved it.” – Esther Newton, Writer, and Author. Dare you take a glimpse into the lives of these unsuspecting characters?

Glimpses is available via Amazon

Click the image for the competition

Read author  Judith Barrow’s review of Glimpses here.

wordcloud2If you would like to be my guest, please read the guidelines and get in touch!


About Sue Vincent

Sue Vincent is a Yorkshire-born writer and one of the Directors of The Silent Eye, a modern Mystery School. She writes alone and with Stuart France, exploring ancient myths, the mysterious landscape of Albion and the inner journey of the soul. Find out more at France and Vincent. She is owned by a small dog who also blogs. Follow her at and on Twitter @SCVincent. Find her books on Goodreads and follow her on Amazon worldwide to find out about new releases and offers. Email:
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81 Responses to Guest Author: Hugh Roberts – Where Do Your Ideas Come From?

  1. So basically, idea come from everywhere. That’s sure where mine come from 🙂 Nicely spoke.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ritu says:

    Brilliant! Inspiration can hit at any time from anything!!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Inspiration rules. 😀 😛 Wonderful to read more about Hugh.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. It is interesting finding out where and when inspiration strikes! A shame that you never did find Maggie, Hugh, maybe you weren’t meant to! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Anisha says:

    Truly inspiring… lovely 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Mary Smith says:

    I find it fascinating how stories have come about. There’s something magical about all those words being inside our heads waiting for us to write them down.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. TanGental says:

    cheese and pickle sarnies? There’s your answer…

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Ideas? Yes, inspiration is found everywhere. Now, if I could just get my mind to translate them into stories as fast as I get them I’d be putting out some some books!

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Jennie says:

    Really good. Thank you.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Lovely post, Sue and Hugh. I loved Last train to Aldwych, although it was very poignant but now I understand why. Tweeted this on @bakeandwrite. Have a lovely weekend.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Reblogged this on Don Massenzio's Blog and commented:
    Check out this great guest post from Hugh Roberts on Sue Vincent’s blog

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Darlene says:

    And they say ironing is a mindless activity. I think I better dust mine off as I have run out of ideas! Great post Hugh!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. dgkaye says:

    Fantastic to see Hugh here. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Pingback: Guest Author: Hugh Roberts – Where Do Your Ideas Come From? – Hugh's Views & News

  15. Reblogged this on Stevie Turner, Indie Author. and commented:
    Sad to read that Aldwych station has closed down; I’ve walked past that one many times too.

    Liked by 2 people

  16. Chuck says:

    Hi Hugh/Sue,
    I agree, if you don’t get the idea written down or at a minimum a note that will spark the memory, it is gone and most likely forever. I remember wanting an introduction to a piece and I had gone weeks without any idea. I woke up one morning around 4 AM, couldn’t go back to sleep. An idea for my introduction popped into my head. I got up, went to my computer and wrote it. I have been told it was one of my finest writings. Anyhow, I concur, never ignore an idea.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks, Chuck. I’m an early bird and do all of my writing before mid afternoon. However, after getting a few good ideas, I have taken to the keyboard in the middle of the night and come away with some great short stories. Well, at least I think they are good. They ended up in the book anyway.

      Liked by 2 people

  17. dconnollyislandgmailcom says:

    This is a very interesting and inspiring read. Thanks so much for sharing this, Sue!

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Hugh, this was lovely and very entertaining. Thank you for sharing it. Sue, thanks for hosting Hugh.
    You’re right about jumping on the ideas when they are fresh. How many stories or parts have I lost because I was in the middle of scooping the litterbox and told myself I could write it down after I’d had my morning coffee? 😀 Hugs!

    Liked by 2 people

  19. Erika Kind says:

    Sue’s support is amazing but that way you two are making a great team!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  20. lucciagray says:

    It was wonderful to read about your inspiration for Last Train to Aldwich, which is one of my favourite short stories 🙂 I agree that small, seemingly insignificant events, conversations, or people we meet by chance, often fleetingly, are powerful triggers for our inspiration. You’ve given me a great idea/inspiration for the bloggers bash post!

    Liked by 2 people

  21. Steve says:

    Another great write up and more insight of where you get your ideas from. I’m not sure if I feel sorry for the fact that you lost Margaret’s phone number or if I just want a cheese and pickle sandwich now. I’m still getting through Glimpses – it’s a keeper. Thanks to Sue for letting you loose on her blog 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  22. I too worked near a shop where I got cheese (havarti) and pickle (dill) sandwiches. Still one of my favourite snacks. Nice to see you here Hugh. I’ll have to do more ironing 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  23. jjspina says:

    Great post, Hugh and Sue! I enjoyed Glimpses! I should iron more often to open up my creative side. ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Pingback: Where Do Your Ideas For Stories And Blog Posts Come From? – Hugh's Views & News  

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