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Writers' News

How to write 1,000 poems in 1,000 days

theguardian.com – Tuesday May 19, 2020

For the past 1,000 days, I’ve been writing at least one poem a day. I started on 17 August 2017 as a terrorist attack was unfolding in Barcelona. I was alone in a pub (standard for poets) and found myself writing a few lines on my phone. I posted it on Instagram, where I explained that I was experimenting with writing fast poems. That experiment is now wildly out of control.

It may not be the healthiest pursuit. It requires daily engagement with the details of terrorist attacks, natural disasters, school shootings, celebrity deaths, sporting events and the slow plotlines of Brexit, Trump and climate change – and now there’s a pandemic to write about. Even so, there are days when it feels as if either the news or my mind has slowed to a standstill. It has helped that “Tuesday” rhymes with “quiet news day”.

[Read the full article]

Literary magazines are often the first place new authors are published. We can’t lose them

theconversation.com – Saturday May 16, 2020

Australia’s literary journals are produced in a fragile ecosystem propped up by a patchwork of volunteer labour, generous patrons and, with any luck, a small slice of government funding.

The Sydney Review of Books, the Australian Book Review and Overland were among a group of publications who sought four-year funding from the Australia Council in 2020 but were unsuccessful.

These publications join the ranks of many others – among them Meanjin and Island – defunded by state or federal arts funding bodies in recent years.

[Read the full article]

New Literary Agent Listing: Linda S. Glaz

firstwriter.com – Friday May 15, 2020

Looking for nonfiction by experts in their field. In fiction, will consider anything well written, particularly romance, either contemporary, suspense, or historic. No children's or works that include graphic sexuality or profanity.

[See the full listing]

New Literary Agent Listing: Diana Flegal

firstwriter.com – Wednesday May 13, 2020

Represents mainstream and inspirational titles. Accepts submissions only from writers she has met face to face at writers conferences or from industry referral.

[See the full listing]

New Agent Listing: Jim Hart

firstwriter.com – Monday May 11, 2020

Interested in nonfiction on the topics of Christian living, church growth, leadership, business, social issues, parenting, and some self-help. Nonfiction writers will need to show a strong platform in their area of expertise. Not looking at memoirs or devotionals at this time.

Looking at select fiction in these categories: suspense/thrillers, romance (contemporary, historical, suspense, Amish), women’s fiction, and some speculative and sci-fi. Fiction writers should possess a strong and growing platform. He is not looking at children’s or middle-grade fiction at this time.

Not looking at proposals for books that have been previously self-published. Please do not send proposals for books that include graphic language and sex.

[See the full listing]

The importance of sadism in writing a great screenplay

spectator.us – Saturday May 2, 2020

How do you tell a great story? According to Craig Mazin, you have to be a sadist.

‘As a writer, you are not the New Testament God who turns water into wine,’ Mazin chuckles on his long-running podcast Scriptnotes. ‘You are the Old Testament God who tortures Job because, I don’t know, it seems like fun.’ Mazin wrote HBO’s horrifying, incandescent miniseries Chernobyl, and so knows of what he speaks. In the episode of this podcast titled ‘How to Write a Movie’, he describes how screenwriters build plot out of suffering.

He outlines a scenario, making the stakes higher each time. Suppose our main character is a single father desperate to protect his child. Not good enough. OK, now suppose he is a single father who witnessed his entire family being murdered, leaving him only one child. Better — but how about this: a man’s entire family are murdered before his eyes, leaving him only one child, and the child is disabled and vulnerable. Then the man loses his child.

It sounds like pure sadism. In fact, it’s the opening 10 minutes of Finding Nemo.

[Read the full article]

Stay at Home — and Write Your Memoir #2

authorlink.com – Saturday May 2, 2020

Last month I wrote here about using your stay-at-home time to work on a memoir and suggested the basics for getting started. This month I’m offering the next step: figuring out what to do with all those memories you’ve been stockpiling in preparation for writing, or with all the stories you’ve already written. What should you do with them? Do you plot your memoir as a novelist might do and somehow fit these in, or is there some other way to use this material?

My belief is that writing memoir in the early stages, is best done without any structure hanging over your head. Why? Because the heart of your memoir—what it’s really about—is best found by working freely to remember and record, to suss out the emotional hot spots in memory and to get the details down.

Still, I know most writers want to get a handle on the shape of their story sooner, rather than later. So, I offer a tool to give you a sense of control, and yet still stave off the official plotting of your memoir for a while longer, at least until you’ve had ample time to explore your memories and learn what is at the base of them driving you to write.

[Read the full article]

New Literary Agent Listing: Nicola Chang

firstwriter.com – Saturday May 2, 2020

Represents writers of fiction and nonfiction as well as a small list of poets. Currently accepting submissions and is primarily looking for literary fiction and nonfiction of all kinds.

[See the full listing]

So, you want a critique?

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

firstwriter.com – Saturday May 2, 2020

You asked for it. You may even have paid for it. But you still cringe when you open the emailed result of the critique and begin to read. You wanted to hear that your novel is great and you’re an astonishing writer, yet that’s not what the words on the screen are saying to you... But here are some ideas to let percolate in your mind when you’ve received what you wanted—some honest criticism.

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Jamie Holmes wrote a book. Here are 9 things to know about the process.

wftv.com – Thursday April 30, 2020

So you’ve got some spare time on your hands, and you’re determined to do the one thing you’ve always dreamed of doing: writing the Great American Novel.

What to do? Where to begin? Here are nine ways to finally take charge of that blank page:

[Read the full article]

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