Morality clauses: are publishers right to police writers?
theguardian.com – Wednesday June 13, 2018
Offensive opinions. Bullying. Sexual misconduct. As the literary world is rocked by scandal US publishers are asking authors to sign contracts with ‘morality clauses’. Are they really the answer?
When the American Libraries Association awards its Andrew Carnegie medals in New Orleans later this month, there will be no winner for excellence in non-fiction. Sherman Alexie, the poet and novelist who was due to receive it for a memoir, You Don’t Have to Say You Love Me, has declined the award following allegations of sexual harassment.
Last month, the novelist Junot Díaz withdrew from the Sydney writers’ festival and from chairing the Pulitzer prize board after being confronted by his own accusers. As the allegations swept through social media, another writer, Mary Karr, joined the fray, tweeting of her distress that her testimony to DT Max, the biographer of her one-time partner David Foster Wallace, about Foster Wallace’s abusive behaviour had been marginalised. “Deeply saddened by the allegations against #JunotDiaz & I support every woman brave enough to speak. The violence #DavidFosterWallace inflicted on me as a single mom was ignored by his biographer & @NewYorker as ‘alleged’ despite my having letters in his hand,” she wrote.
Always Do a Test Run of That Fancy New Writing App
lifehacker.com – Saturday June 9, 2018
So you have a new writing app you’re dying to try, eh? Well, before you sit down to take on that big writing project, consider giving that app a solid test run so you can learn all the ins and outs first.
There’s this feeling that comes with a fancy new piece of writing software, or productivity software in general. It’s a feeling of potential, of power, like you’ve suddenly found the secret that’s going to help you to finish your novel, your screenplay, or that school paper that decides whether you pass or fail. Unfortunately, that feeling quickly fades when you realize you have no idea how to use it. If there’s one thing that will freeze your flow into self-manifested writer’s block, it’s an app’s learning curve.
Bill Clinton and James Patterson are co-authors – but who did the writing?
theguardian.com – Friday June 8, 2018
As the world’s bestselling author, James Patterson has his name on a lot of covers. Usually, the font size his hallmark enjoys overshadows that of a lesser known collaborator. Contrary to the popular adage, you can tell a lot by a book’s cover. The message on Patterson’s covers is clear: he is the selling point. But this is not the case with Patterson’s most recent title, The President Is Missing, where the name of his co-author, Bill Clinton, shares equal prominence.
Here's What It's Actually Like to Write Romance Novels for a Living
cosmopolitan.com – Tuesday June 5, 2018
Lauren Blakely knows romance. In 2018 alone — which, reminder, is not even half over yet — she's released five books and has at least five more coming. Here, she shares her tips for aspiring writers, romance or otherwise, and explains how a good sex scene makes a reader sweat.
Murder mystery author Jane Harper has six tips for writing a bestselling novel
abc.net.au – Sunday June 3, 2018
In 2014, Jane Harper decided she was finally going to do it — she was going to write a book.
She enrolled in an online writing course, and in just twelve weeks had completed her first draft of The Dry.
The fast paced, hard-edged crime novel was the kind novel Harper had always wanted to write.
"I like books with a bit of mystery and suspense," the former journalist says.
It was an instant hit. Critics loved The Dry for its elegant structure, Australian voice, and Harper's ability to vividly paint a landscape in the grip of drought.
Readers loved it for its tight pace, its awkward, lovable hero and its satisfying "whodunnit" reveal.
The book raced on to bestseller lists around the world, won multiple awards, and was sold in to more than 20 foreign language territories.
Today, Harper is still riding high on the success of The Dry.
The movie rights have been sold to Reece Witherspoon's production company, and the script is complete. Harper's second book, Force of Nature, has been another bestseller, and she has another on its way.
So, how does she do it?
While at the Sydney Writers' Festival, Harper revealed the secrets to writing a bestselling novel. Writers, grab your pencils...
7 Writing Tips I'm Following This Summer To Help Me Finish My Novel By The End Of The Season
bustle.com – Wednesday May 30, 2018
Every May, I get a flurry in my stomach as summer swings into view. I'm going to write a novel this summer, I think to myself. I'm going to actually do it. After all, I have three whole months ahead of me! That's so much time.
Without fail, every year of college, I would turn in my last final, head to the coffee shop around the corner, and fire up Microsoft Word. I reasoned with myself that if I just put the time and effort I used on homework during the school year, I would have an amazing novel finished in no time. No sweat. For a blissful evening, I'd sip on a hibiscus iced tea and pound at the keys in pure bliss:Yes, I'm doing it! Book deal, here I come! Better start thinking about the movie rights!
21 Writing Prompts To Help You Finish An Entire Novel This Summer
bustle.com – Thursday May 24, 2018
Summer is officially here, and it's the perfect time to start writing a novel. There's no school and plenty of sunshine — which means it's the perfect season to focus on a new project. What could be more thrilling than buckling down and writing that book you've always been dreaming about?
During most of the year, I fantasize about having the time and space to work on my own writing projects. Even if you're not in school, there's something about summer that just makes everything seem more possible. I don't know if it's the same for you, but I always get a burst of energy when the weather gets hot and the days get long. At the beginning of the summer, it feels like anything and everything is possible.
Should You Tell People You're Writing A Novel? Reddit Users Offer Their Tips
bustle.com – Tuesday May 22, 2018
Writer's block is arguably the worst thing that can happen to an aspiring author, but coming in at a close second is the frustration of dealing with this question: Should you tell people you're writing a novel? Replying to TheWayDenzelSaysIt on the r/writing subreddit, many redditors expressed reluctance to talk to non-writers about their pet projects. Their answers are both relatable and informative, and I've picked out some of the best for you to take a look at below.
The Internet can be a terrible place, and Reddit gets a bad reputation for housing some of the 'Net's most repugnant denizens, but places like r/writingare safe havens for hobbyists and creatives looking for communities based around their crafts. Seriously, if you're a writer who has no writing friends, hop on Reddit and get you some. Building a strong support network is one of the best things you can do to make sure you achieve your goals, especially if you enjoy writing challenges like NaNoWriMo and StoryADay.
Ireland's thriving literary magazine scene: space for tradition and experimentation
irishtimes.com – Saturday May 19, 2018
Reading the mission statements of Irish literary journals, a common theme emerges: the desire to offer writers the space to develop ideas that may not otherwise find a platform. From the more established titles such as Dublin Review, Crannóg and The Stinging Fly, which published its first issue 20 years ago this month, to more recent outlets like The Bohemyth, Banshee and gorse, fostering talent new and old is the backbone of “the little magazine”.
A vibrant journal scene with a roots-up feel to it has developed in Ireland in the past decade. There are currently in the region of 30 publications across print and online media seeking submissions multiple times a year. This has coincided with a growing enthusiasm for creative writing in general, with all of the major colleges in Ireland and many other cultural organisations offering programmes ranging from evening courses for beginners to two-year MFAs (Master of Fine Arts).
It Used To Be Perilous To Write Fanfiction
kotaku.com – Thursday May 17, 2018
Fanfiction is hardly a new phenomenon, but that doesn’t always mean it was safe to write. For a time, in certain fandoms, writing fanfiction could get you a letter from a lawyer. Now, however, the internet has given fandom enough leverage to allow the dubiously legal practice of writing about other people’s characters continues to flourish.
Fanfiction, the act of writing original stories based on someone else’s creative work, exists in a sketchy legal space. While derivative and transformative works are technically protected under fair use, many authors do not believe fanfiction falls in that category. Authors that still dislike or disallow fanfiction cite an experience that author Marion Zimmer Bradley had in 1992. Bradley not only liked but encouraged fanfiction in the initial stages of her fandom, but as the story goes, she realized that an upcoming novel of hers would touch on themes that were in a fanfiction she had read, and she reached out to the author to attempt to negotiate a deal so as to avoid a lawsuit. Although not all parties can agree on how much of Bradley’s novel had been written or exactly what the terms of the agreement were with this fanfic author, Bradley said that she decided to scrap the novel rather than risk a lawsuit. This story loomed large in the memories of authors like Anne McCaffrey and George R. R. Martin, who cited it as an example of what can happen if you don’t protect your copyright. While Martin allows fanfiction as long as you don’t send it to him, McCaffrey banned all fanfiction for her series Dragonriders of Pern from 1992 until 2004.