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Writers' News

It is easier to win major literary awards by writing a lead character who is a man, Booker Prize-winning authors warn

telegraph.co.uk – Sunday July 8, 2018

It is easier to win major literary awards by writing a lead character who is a man, Booker Prize-winning authors have suggested, as they warn the tendency to laud with male protagonists is “concerning”.

Dame Hilary Mantel, the only woman to have won the Man Booker Prize twice for the first two novels of her Thomas Cromwell trilogy, said it “might be observed” that her award success came easier for having a male protagonist than if she had been writing about a woman.

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My top 10 tips for writing a thriller by Nicholas Leigh

femalefirst.co.uk – Friday July 6, 2018

As an author, there’s no better time to pen a thriller. Last year alone, the genre shifted 18.7million copies, outselling other types of fiction for the first time in history. But while our thirst for thrillers goes unabated, tapping into the £117million market isn’t easy. Here, British novelist Nicholas Leigh reveals his top 10 tips for writing an edge-of-your seat thriller that really thrills.

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Stormzy Launches New Publishing Imprint Called #Merky Books

mixmag.net – Friday July 6, 2018

Grime favorite Stormzy teamed with publishing leader Penguin Random House to create his own publishing house called #Merky Books.

Revealed first on his Instagram, Stormzy also confirmed the first book to be published under #Merky Books will be called Rise Up: The #Merky Journey So Far, which is due out November 1. He's also revealed that he plans to open submissions as well as offer paid internships for students for his publishing channel, all with the shared goal to encourage the next generation of writers.

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New Magazine Listing

firstwriter.com – Friday July 6, 2018

Publishes: Articles; Nonfiction; Poetry; 
Areas include: Horror; Sci-Fi; 
Markets: Adult; 
Preferred styles: Literary

Print and online magazine publishing science fiction and horror poetry in forms such as scifaiku, haibun, senryu, and tanka. Also publishes articles. See website for full submission guidelines.

[See the full listing]

Taking A Creative Writing Class Can Be Intimidating, But Here's 13 Things To Know Before You Sign Up

bustle.com – Wednesday July 4, 2018

I was lucky enough to take my first creative writing class in high school, and I was instantly hooked. I went on to take classes in college, and then even after I graduated. So, if you're about to start your first creative writing class, I am so excited for you.

But, what is creative writing class, anyway? How does that even work? When I took my first class, I had absolutely no idea what to expect. Creative writing is not taught like your typical school subject, but it's not a complete blow-off elective either. And of course, every teacher does things in their own way.

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'Annihilation' Author Jeff VanderMeer Shares the Secrets to Writing Great Imaginative Fiction

space.com – Wednesday July 4, 2018

Aspiring writers of "imaginative fiction" — whether science fiction, fantasy or other kinds — are in for a treat: a new update to the fiction-writing guide "Wonderbook," by Jeff VanderMeer (Abrams Image, 2018).

VanderMeer is a well-known author of some of the strangest fiction today (including the "Southern Reach" trilogy that the recent movie "Annihilation"draws from), and with "Wonderbook: The Illustrated Guide to Creating Imaginative Fiction," released today (July 3, 2018) he provides an equally strange (but effective) dive into the fundamentals of fiction writing, intermingling text and illustrations to explore the complexities of fiction. The book also includes perspectives from many authors, including Kim Stanley Robinson, Ursula K. Le Guin, George R.R. Martin, Neil Gaiman and more.

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Find yourself a muse (preferably nude but clothed will do) – and 9 more writing tips

irishtimes.com – Monday July 2, 2018

1. If your writing’s not flowing, rip it up. For me, the most successful pieces are always the most free-flowing. If it’s a struggle, be aware that a reader will intuit that too, so pull the plug. After all, Robert Louis Stevenson started 393 works only to finish 27 of them. I honestly can’t think of any job other than writing that involves as much waste – it’s worse than working in an effluent plant!

2. Keep fuelling your brain as you write. As I write this, I’m eating Baked Beetroot & Golden Linseed Tortillas which masquerade as healthy, a bit like myself, but are probably as bad as Monster Munch. While my right hand clicks on the mouse, my left dips more industriously into the tortillas. Testifying to the fact that I’ve just given birth to a new play, I need to lose a few pounds which leads seamlessly into…

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Don’t dip your pen in someone else’s blood: writers and ‘the other’

irishtimes.com – Sunday July 1, 2018

Was there ever any worse advice than write what you know? Who of the greats ever wrote what they knew? Did Charlotte Bronte live in a grand country house with a man called Edward Rochester who tried to commit bigamy with her before she wrote Jane Eyre? Was Gustave Flaubert a woman who committed adultery before he wrote Madame Bovary? And how many of us could write a good book if we only wrote what we know? I would have to write about a middle-aged woman who lives in a midlands town, visits Tesco and tends her garden. No story there. No bestseller. Because it’s not interesting. As writers we have to make things up if we want to spin a good yarn. We have to have a murder or two, a broken heart, a bank robbery, a ride in a spaceship.

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Writers and publishers trade blows over plummeting author pay levels

theguardian.com – Saturday June 30, 2018

The Society of Authors has issued a sharply worded challenge to the UK’s biggest publishers after the chief executive of the Publishers Association questioned new figures revealing the plummeting incomes of writers, describing them as “unrecognisable”.

A survey of more than 5,500 professional writers for the Authors’ Licensing and Collecting Society (ALCS) revealed earlier this week that median earnings for professional authors had dropped by 42% since 2005 below £10,500 a year, with the average full-time writer earning just £5.73 an hour, well below the UK minimum wage for those over 25. The number of professional authors, defined as those who spend more than half their working hours writing, also fell, from 40% of all published authors in 2005 to 13.7% in 2018.

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Getting In The Right Zone To Write

forbes.com – Saturday June 30, 2018

We’ve all been there. There’s a deadline looming and all you have is a blank page. Or a mess of scribbled notes. Or reams of writing that feels dull and uninspired. The clock is ticking, and you need a break-through, but it feels like you’re going in circles.

Well, it may seem counter-intuitive but the first thing to do is step away from your computer screen. Many people have got used to thinking and writing from a place of stress. But it doesn’t have to be that way. When you’re in the right energy zone and frame of mind, most tasks – including writing – can be done with flow and ease.

So, here are my top tips for getting in the right zone to write.

[Read the full article]

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