Category Archives: articles

Factual feast!

Hello fellow subbers.  This bulletin brings news of some non-fiction successes.

handbook of creative writingI have a chapter on Social Media for Writers included in the second edition of The Handbook of Creative Writing, just published by Edinburgh University Press.  I can honestly say it’s the most comprehensive and thorough guide to creative writing I have ever read!  So many different types of writing are covered, including the more unusual types such as flash fiction, song lyrics, memoirs, humorous fiction, literary magazines, writing as therapy, screen writing and many other areas that aren’t covered by the regular manuals.  (Great to read a chapter on writing for the theatre.)  Also discussed are MAs, writing in the community, how to present yourself as a writer, teaching writing, making a living as a writer and even the theory and history of creative writing as a leisure activity.  At over 500 pages it doubles as a useful paperweight!

Also out this month is July’s Writing Magazine which includes my article on grammar checking software: The Proof is Out There!  I love punning titles and this one just about slipped through the cheesiness filter.  Now there’s an idea for a useful piece of software.

Writing Magazine July 2014There’s some new opportunities for YA out so I’ll be posting on them soon.  In the meantime, keep subbing and good luck!

 

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New indie markets

A couple of interesting indie publishers featured in Writing Magazine this month.

First is Fledgling Press,  a Scottish company that focuses on debut authors writing a variety of fiction including YA.  If you’re Scottish too that will help!  You should send three chapters and a short synopsis by email and they aim to reply within 6 weeks.  If accepted your book will be placed on a longlist for possible publication.  Note they do not want sci fi.  Full submission details at www.fledglingpress.co.uk/submissions.

The other indie that caught my eye this month is Ghostly Publishing which has been founded by a paranormal investigator, no less!  The premise gets even more intriguing as the submission process involves peer review on the site, so you need to register then upload your submission – first three chapters and synopsis – rather than emailing or posting it.  There is also a free ‘manuscript checker’ which apparently can instantly score your book to test if it is ready for publication – the closer you get to zero, the better!  Take a look at these details on the site to familiarise yourself with the process.  As you might expect, Ghostly wants fantasy and sci-fi for child to teen readership.

And finally, if you do buy Writing Magazine this month you’ll find my article on how to interpret your blog stats nestling happily on page 28 under the pun-derful title Stat’s Amazing!

Happy submitting everyone!

Back Me Up on This

You!  Yes, you!  Back up your work!

Today I’m going to play the parent and nag you.  Whatever writing you’re doing, wherever you are, stop now and back it up.  Whether it’s on a memory stick, an external hard drive or a paper printout, make sure you have an extra copy of whatever you are doing.  (Even if you don’t value it much now, you may do later on.  A novel lost always becomes a masterpiece in retrospect!)

My latest article on backing up and storing your work is published this month in Writing Magazine (May 2013 edition).  There’s lots of other useful stuff in there as well including a special on writing picture books and an insightful interview with three very different literary agents.

Have you backed up your work yet?  No?  Shame on you!  Yes?  Good – I won’t stop your pocket money.  At least, not this week.

writing magazine may 2013

Creative Social Media

Probably the most important thing you can do this year to increase your chances of success – apart from writing your brilliant book, of course – is to boost your web profile.  If you’re looking for inspiration, why not try:

  • tweeting or facebooking as your book character
  • tweeting or facebooking as your villain!
  • blogging a serial
  • creating a collaborative blog with other writers
  • creating a magazine-style publishing blog
  • tweeting micro-fiction
  • creating an interactive story

All these ideas are discussed in detail in my article Get Creative with Social Media in Writing Magazine, February 2013 (available in the UK in WH Smith).  Plus ten tips for getting creative, and a step-by-step guide on using WordPress to create an interactive story, just like I did.

WM Feb 2013