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Writing for Money: Tips for Planning Your Next Article Pitch

sitepoint.com – Saturday November 19, 2016

If you have expertise with web technologies, there’s good money to be made writing for online publications like SitePoint.

Don’t worry if you feel you’re not a great writer. The most important thing is your knowledge and enthusiasm for your subject.

As an editor for SitePoint, I’ve compiled a list of the most important things to consider when planning and pitching your article idea.

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Ruth Padel: ‘Writing needs connection to the outside world: a lot of it seems to get done when you’re simply living’

theguardian.com – Saturday November 19, 2016

All days are different; what’s the same is that I spend hardly any time in my study. It’s tiny. I love its turquoise walls and the window looking at flats across the road, but there are piles of paper on the floor and waves of guilt from unanswered letters and I’m rarely there except to use the printer. I write at the kitchen table, on a sofa, in a traffic jam, or in bed, looking out at the garden. Writing needs connection to the outside world and a lot of it seems to get done when you’re simply living. Research is just a grand name for things you’d do anyway because you need to know. My new book is dedicated to the wonderful, desperately needed Focus Homeless Outreach team in Camden, north London, where I live. I went round Camden’s homeless hostels, and haunted St Pancras Old church, one of the first sites of Christianity in England.

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How Publishers Can Build on Self-Publishing’s Victories

digitalbookworld.com – Thursday November 17, 2016

In recent articles, I have pointed with optimism to the green-shoots of recovery for the book industry after a bruising and challenging seven years.

Print sales are on the way up, or at least finally not falling, depending on whom you speak to. Consumer ebook sales are dropping, but likely to be stabilizing against their huge initial growth, and non-consumer ebook sales are on the rise. The threat of the super-markets are no longer as strong as they look increasingly elsewhere. We have finally accepted digitization, and it is now a core part of most publishers’ businesses. The often acrimonious divide between self- and traditional publishing has quietened, as they sit, with caution, alongside each other. And with Amazon—though still challenging—we understand the pros and cons and are learning to work with or around them.

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The Daily Writing Habits Of 10 Famous Authors

bustle.com – Tuesday November 15, 2016

Deep breaths, NaNoWriMo people (NaNoWriMoers?). One page at a time. You can do it. And even if you're not a caffeine-addled writer trying to frantically crank out an entire novel in a month, you can find a way to balance regular writing with eating, sleeping, and perhaps even socializing. Many authors before you have managed it—even if a lot of them had somewhat... unique writing habits. So here are a few accomplished author's daily writing routines, to inspire you to stick with that writing schedule.

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Breaking the mould: the Goldsmiths Prize-shortlisted authors on innovative fiction

newstatesman.com – Thursday November 10, 2016

The Goldsmiths Prize rewards fiction that “extends the possibilities of the novel form”. In a series of interviews, the six authors shortlisted for the 2016 prize discuss creative risk, writing sex, the pitfalls of the publishing industry, and why so many of them are Irish.

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5 Writing Tips I Wish I'd Known Before I Wrote My First Novel

bustle.com – Monday November 7, 2016

So you’re writing a book. This is great news! YAY for you! Doesn’t it sound fun? And it is! Well, it is when it’s not sucking the life out of your soul. That's why I'm here with some writing tips and tricks — or life lessons I learned about writing during my career that I (sometimes) apply to my own work.

I’m working on my 18th novel right now — my first, Fools Rush In, came out in 2006, and my latest, On Second Thought, comes out in January 2017. In some respects, it’s gotten easier; in others, it’s gotten much harder. But each time I type “The End,” I cheer, dance around the office with my dogs, then open to another document and jot down some notes. That document is called “Before You Start Another Book” and contains notes to myself about how I screwed up and wasted time in my last manuscript, and how I’ll never ever do it again (or I will, but not for lack of knowledge). I'm sharing these tips with you, so hopefully you don't repeat the same mistakes.

Below are my top five, and jeesh, it would save so much time if I listened to myself.

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Want to Succeed at Self-Publishing? Harness Your Passion: Tips from an Indie Author

publishersweekly.com – Monday November 7, 2016

Janice Petrie’s life has always fueled her writing. Her experience as an outreach specialist for the New England Aquarium helped inform her picture books, while growing up near -- and once staying the night in -- a haunted, lakeside cottage gave her non-fiction a unique perspective. When she decided to try self-publishing, she wanted to “produce well-written books that readers would find entertaining and interesting.” Perfection to a Fault, an indie true crime tale of a gruesome 1916 murder of a wife by her husband, received a positive review from Publishers Weekly, with our reviewer calling it “crisp” and “quick-moving,” and praising Petrie for “expertly put[ting] details into historical context.”

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How Do You Capture the 1980s in Writing? Six Novelists Discuss Re-creating the Decade

vulture.com – Friday October 28, 2016

Writers never make things easy on themselves, and nostalgia is no exception. While the phenomenon has a rich literary tradition that sifts down like a dreamy haze through the novels of Marcel Proust, Kazuo Ishiguro, and Virginia Woolf, it’s no mean feat to convincingly render a lost time and place on the page. In film and music, the signifiers of another era are seen and heard, viscerally apparent, with no need for explicit discussion or exposition. Authors, meanwhile, are often stuck describing the particulars.

So how do writers transport us backward through time, especially to a recent decade such as the ever-popular 1980s, without weighing down their stories? We asked six novelists:

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Is Writing For Free Ever OK? There's A Fine Line Between Exposure And Exploitation

bustle.com – Thursday October 27, 2016

Writing is a tough gig. There's just no way around that. Whether you want to write in print for a magazine, or for your favorite website, there's a lot of time and work to be done before you get there. One of the biggest controversies in the writing community is the idea of writing for free. It sounds simple enough to tell someone, 'Never write for free,' but the reality is more complicated than that. In a perfect world we could maybe tell writers never to write for free, but in the real world, we have to make sacrifices from time to time.

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Science Fiction Writing: Character Building In Radically Different Worlds

scifiaddicts.com – Wednesday October 26, 2016

Science fiction demands particular care from prospective authors. In science fiction writing, character building done correctly can give the story wings, or, if done clumsily or incompletely, drag down a story with a great universe and premises. In this article, I’ll take a closer look at how to construct characters in science fiction stories where the premises are drastically different from the reality we’re used to.

First, I’ll discuss how to frame a character in the context of the universe that you have created that the character lives in. Next, I’ll explain how to make sure that the character has a history that is logical and features which are logical, given the premises that we defined in the first part. Finally, I’ll warn you about anthropomorphizing and creating culturally-blind characters. If you decide to buck my advice, don’t worry: many a science fiction story has successfully depicted characters in wild circumstances.

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