The Moving Pen | Paul Nicholls

Paul Nicholls

Paul is a writer with a taste for comedy, mystery, history, and just a little bit of magic. His musings on nothing in particular can be found on

Fred takes one of the nails he holds between his lips and places it against the timber, hammering it home with far …

22 Min Read

It was a song oft repeated around the sly grog shops and two-up schools of the great metropolis. Some say Jim Grey …

3 Min Read

‘Have you balanced yet, Lothar? We can’t be staying here all evening.’ ‘Almost, Herr L-Langmann,’ said Lothar, his cheeks flushing red. He …

31 Min Read

The spectators cheered as the juggler hurled the fire sticks into the air. They soared into the darkening sky, spinning end over …

17 Min Read

The Royal Barge bumped against the quay. Lysandra, who had been dozing, grumbled when Jena tapped on the door. ‘Princess, we are …

13 Min Read

Ben was puffing from having sprinted down the platform. Thirty years ago he wouldn’t have raised a sweat, but now his legs …

13 Min Read

The surface of the Great River was completely still. Leaning over the rail of the royal barge, Lysandra gasped at the beauty …

17 Min Read

When I bought my new dress you smiled cheekily, lasciviously. At my graduation you put your arm around me, And said, “she’s …

1 Min Read

Oh glorious, silver orb, your beams drip deep through the dank damp earth until they reach me here in my resting place. …

2 Min Read

A drifter, my Pa had said. A young girl just passin’ through. I seen her next day in the big barn, watchin’ …

3 Min Read

The Rustler

Written by Paul Nicholls

Tara loved living near the mangroves, where the tides rolled in and out every day. At high tide the water was bustling …

14 Min Read

Lysandra felt almost invisible in her black cloak as she hurried in the darkness down the Avenue of the Pharaohs. The shadowy …

20 Min Read

Back in her private chambers it took a long time for Lysandra’s tears to stop flowing. Sitting on the end of the …

16 Min Read

Lysandra’s right foot came out of her sandal as she took the bend at pace. A troop of Roman soldiers marching in …

15 Min Read

The Fifth Assassin

Written by Paul Nicholls

Gav couldn’t decide what gave him more solace; the pistol in his right coat pocket or the bottle of poison in his …

7 Min Read


Written by Paul Nicholls

Ah yes, The Barnacles! Don’t they seem to just grow right out of the rocky shores of Sydney Harbour. Regular readers of …

22 Min Read

Joey The wind blowing off Lake Michigan gives me jitters. It’s rattling the trolley wires, and the street lights hanging off them …

11 Min Read

Under the Milky Way

Written by Paul Nicholls

Helena stepped back from the edge a second time. Breakers thudded against the rocks below and the sea-breeze ruffled the folds of …

3 Min Read


Written by Paul Nicholls

The shade from the London plane trees does a good job of extracting the sting of the sun. Now winter is over …

2 Min Read


Written by Paul Nicholls

“Shona, why are you gripping the stern rail so tight? Are you seasick?” Oh Christ! It’s Veronica, the gym junkie. “Just enjoying …

3 Min Read

The Riddle of Thebes

Written by Paul Nicholls

Leo lay languidly under the acacia tree, picking at the morsels of meat caught between his molars. He thought about nothing in …

11 Min Read


Written by Paul Nicholls

‘Mum, I’m bored. Can we go to the shops?’ Corey’s mum held up her hand to shoosh him and told the Zoomed …

16 Min Read

Four Cockatoos

Written by Paul Nicholls

Winter One winter’s day at sunset, four sulphur-crested cockatoos landed on my fence – one bird for each of the seasons. It …

6 Min Read
rain on window

The Writer

Written by Paul Nicholls

Elias’s cheeks were burning. He strode down the corridor, barely looking at his father walking beside him. The sound of the rain …

7 Min Read

Among the Ironbarks

Written by Paul Nicholls

You can’t bring her back you know. In the gloaming we queued, awaiting our deliverance from another week. The bus arrived just …

7 Min Read


Written by Paul Nicholls

Just a few days into the swimming program of the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics, the world was astonished to see the …

13 Min Read
Hound dog

Hound Dog

Written by Paul Nicholls

Jett pressed play on the CD and You ain’t Nothin’ but a Hound Dog rocked out across the empty rehearsal room. Normally …

8 Min Read