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How to write a “good” bad sex scene: the ins and outs of erotic fiction, in Norwich

newstatesman.com – Thursday June 13, 2019

Women are better at writing sex scenes than men, and it’s thought that this is because men are afraid of being nominated for the Bad Sex Award. The fear of winning it puts them off so much, they write badly. The novelist Sarah Hall counted scores of “he took her from behinds” in men’s novels when she judged the Booker prize.

Men also might be shy to bare their fantasies, resulting in flat or portentous language, while women, for myriad reasons political, social and psychological, have always relied more upon a fantasy life, so are better at it.

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Why Does Writing Suck?

thecut.com – Tuesday June 11, 2019

It is rare, in this day and age, to see a good tweet on the internet, but I did love this one, from New York Times writer Erin Griffith, which includes a graph she designed to depict the dramatic ups and downs of a writer’s self-esteem, which are entirely dependent upon the stage of the writing/editing process they’re in. There is the ecstatic high in submitting a draft to one’s editor, and the inevitable gloom that follows the first round of edits received. Writing may not be the only profession subject to such wildly variable morale, but to hear writers tell it, there’s simply nothing worse. As Dorothy Parker once said (according to the internet, anyway), “I hate writing, but I love having written.”

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What Is J.K. Rowling's Net Worth?

thestreet.com – Monday June 10, 2019

Back when she first obtained a literary agent, J.K. Rowling was told she'd never be able to make money writing children's books. More than two decades later, she remains the wealthiest living writer.

J.K. Rowling has been famous since publication by Scholastic Corp.'s Arthur A. Levine Books imprint of "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone," her first book about the young Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry student Harry Potter in 1998, with an initial print run of 50,000 copies. She has since published seven Harry Potter books, and according to Scholastic, more than 500 million copies of Harry Potter books have been sold worldwide.

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How do authors earn a living? It’s a Catch-22 situation

ft.com – Friday June 7, 2019

As advances dwindle, TV adaptations and literary events are potential revenue streams

The excitement surrounding the new television series of Catch-22, starring and co-directed by George Clooney, is symptomatic of the current vogue for consuming literature via the small screen. Netflix recently announced that it had adapted around 50 literary works over the past year. Whereas once the only way of engaging with a book was to read it, now, in addition to watching TV or cinema adaptations, we are increasingly listening to the book in audio form — or to its author at an event or festival. The growing popularity of these modes of literary engagement is opening up new revenue streams for writers, just as earnings from the traditional model of advances and royalties are dwindling.

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So you want to be a novelist? A New York literary agent, editor and author reveal how bestsellers are born

independent.co.uk – Sunday June 2, 2019

Stephen Barbara’s office is nothing to be afraid of. It’s a small, cosy space in Midtown Manhattan with a bookshelf in the corner and inspirational messages on the walls (“There is nothing new in art except talent” and “A mind needs books as a sword needs a whetstone if it is to keep its edge”). Barbara himself is a welcoming person. Though he does claim to be “very argumentative”, that side of his personality doesn’t manifest itself during our hour-long chat. He’s polite, voluble, and answers questions with the patience and precision of someone who loves the topic at hand. Yet most strangers who attempt to contact Barbara will agonise over their emails for weeks. They will ask their friends to proof-read their messages. They will hold their breath as they hit send. They will spend the next hours, days or weeks anxiously refreshing their email inbox. In other words, they will manage their communications with a level of anguish that seems irreconcilable with the perfectly pleasant person sitting in front of me. Stephen Barbara, you see, is a New York literary agent.

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Is Small Press for You?

By G. Miki Hayden
Instructor at Writer's Digest University online and private writing coach

firstwriter.com – Sunday June 2, 2019

Manuscript finished, hat in hand, we all yearn to sell to Random House. But while the big guys demand “breakthrough” potential, most of us write mid-list or niche. Therefore, though aiming straight for the top, we might want to keep in mind independent imprints.

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How To Build A High-Revenue Writing Business

forbes.com – Friday May 31, 2019

You might never expect it but alongside skills like UX design and mobile application development, journalism is one of the top skills companies most need in 2019, according to a LinkedIn survey of senior leaders. “Once a dwindling skill, journalism isn’t just for journalists anymore as marketing and content teams alike vie for people who can tell compelling stories,” the social media platform noted.

That has created opportunities for freelance writers. But many don’t know how to make the most of the work that’s available so they can build a writing business that supports them and their families.

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Faber & Faber: The Untold Story – What do publishers actually do all day?

irishtimes.com – Saturday May 25, 2019

On my first visit to the offices of Penguin Books in 1990 I remember overhearing the receptionist busily answering phone calls with the greetings, “Hello Penguin”, “Hello Bodley Head”, “Hello Viking”, “Hello Michael Joseph”, “Hello Hamish Hamilton”.

It was a roll call of publishing houses swallowed up by a conglomerate that was later swallowed by another conglomerate. This is no criticism of Penguin who adapted to economic circumstances to continue to publish excellent books. Publishers have survived through amalgamations for decades, resulting in a diminishing pool of gatekeepers for new authors to get past.

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Publishing: How To Get Your Writing Picked Up

mainepublic.org – Saturday May 18, 2019

Our panel examines the ins and outs of the publishing industry, including: honing writing skills, finding an agent, getting published, and the business of bookselling. We’ll also hear about how bookstores determine which books to feature, and why.

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Your Complete Guide to Popular Literary Devices in Great Writing

bookriot.com – Thursday May 16, 2019

We all know what it means to read “good writing,” right?  Well, no, we don’t. It’s true that we often recognize something as “great” when we see it. Our teachers may reference the “literary devices” that make it good. But if you have to talk about a book in a class, it can be hard to describe “greatness.” This is even more nerve-wracking on a test or quiz. I can’t just write “I liked it” and move on!

WHAT ARE LITERARY DEVICES?

One of the best ways to connect deeply with texts when you are just learning about how to define good writing is through literary devices. Literary devices are like strategies or techniques that a writer can use. They showcase creative thought and connections between things that might otherwise not be connected. When we notice a great connection being made, we get the opportunity to share it with others in our classes or among our friends who also are reading such a book.

Below are just a few of the literary devices you may encounter as you delve into the great works of literature. You might also notice variations of them in your reading for pleasure, and thinking about literary devices may allow you to marvel even more at the genius of your favorite authors.

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