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Writers' News

Why are great women writers still adopting male pseudonyms?

stylist.co.uk – Friday November 22, 2019

There are some interesting things you may or may not know about Nuneaton-born writer, George Eliot. In 2015, her landmark book, Middlemarch (1872), topped a BBC poll of the 100 greatest British novels and it’s been cited as one of the finest works ever written by such diverse writers as Virginia Woolf and Martin Amis. 

But as well as her literary prowess, Eliot was also steeped in scandal. First she was ostracised by polite society for living openly with a married man, George Lewes. And then, after his death, her reputation took a further tumble when she married a man 20 years her junior only for him to attempt suicide on their honeymoon balcony in Venice.

To put it succinctly, the woman born Mary Ann or Marian Evans in 1819 is one of Britain’s greatest writers, having also written the stone-cold classics Adam Bede (1859), The Mill On The Floss (1860) and Silas Marner (1861) to name just a few. Yet Eliot remains something of an enigma.

In part, it’s thanks to her image as a slightly dour Victorian writer (her novels fell out of favour in the early 20th century only to be reappraised in the 1950s), but also, and more importantly, because of her male pen name. But just why did she feel the need to write under this false identity?

[Read the full article]

New Magazine Listing

firstwriter.com – Friday November 22, 2019

Publishes: Poetry;
Markets: Adult;
Preferred styles: Literary

Daily online publication of haiku and micro-poems. Submit online using website submission form.

[See the full listing]

New Literary Agent Listing: Iris Blasi

firstwriter.com – Wednesday November 20, 2019

Currently seeking nonfiction in the categories of biography, memoir, history, science, business, “big idea” books, pop culture, cultural criticism, true crime, and narrative nonfiction, particularly with a strong hook or something stemming from a quirky journalistic/academic/personal obsession.

[See the full listing]

The Rothman Brecher Ehrich Livingston Agency Signs Deal With the WGA

deadline.com – Tuesday November 19, 2019

Respected TV and film literary boutique The Rothman Brecher Ehrich Livingston Agency, a member of Association of Talent Agents, has reached a deal with the Writers Guild.

“Rothman Brecher Ehrich Livingston is pleased to announce that it has signed a new Franchise Agreement with the WGA,” the principals said in a statement to Deadline, declining further comment.

RBEL is the fourth established ATA member mid-size agency to break ranks and sign with the WGA, joining another literary boutique, Kaplan Stahler, as well as  Buchwald and Abrams Artists, and comes only a week after the guild’s most recent pact with Abrams Artists. Verve, which is not an ATA member, was the first notable agency with writer clients to reach an agreement with the WGA in May.

[Read the full article]

Ward, Desser Have New Roles at Random House

publishersweekly.com – Tuesday November 19, 2019

At Penguin Random House's flagship imprint, Andy Ward has been promoted to publisher, while Knopf's Robin Desser has been tapped as senior v-p and editor-in-chief. Ward is replacing Susan Kamil, who died, suddenly, last month.

In an announcement about Ward's promotion, Gina Centrello, president and publisher of Random House, said Ward, who is currently editor-in-chief at RH, has shown "steady, caring stewardship, as well as his own talents as an editor." Centrello said that Ward, in his new role, "will help set the priorities for not just Random House but also the Dial and Hogarth imprints," as well as acquiring and editing.

[Read the full article]

National Centre for Writing seeks working class writers

thebookseller.com – Saturday November 16, 2019

The National Centre for Writing in Norwich is relaunching its Escalator Talent Development Scheme seeing under-represented voices in fiction from the East of England with a special focus this year on writers from working class backgrounds.

Now entering its 15th year, the writing programme is supported by the Arts Councils and has worked with almost 100 writers, helping launch the careers of Michael Donkor (published by 4th Estate), Megan Bradbury (Picador), Miranda Doyle (Faber), Guinevere Glasfurd-Brown (Hodder) and Kate Worsley (Bloomsbury)

The 2020 scheme is keen to receive applications from early career writers who self-identify as from a working class background, or writers who wouldn’t ordinarily have the opportunity to benefit from this kind of support, the National Centre for Writing (NCW) said. “Working class voices remain critically under-represented in contemporary fiction and NCW seeks to address this through Escalator and its talent development programme more broadly,” the Centre added. The Bookseller’s investigation into class earlier this year revealed that around 80% of people in the publishing industry who identify as working class their career has been adversely affected by their background.

[Read the full article]

New Magazine Listing

firstwriter.com – Friday November 15, 2019

Publishes: Essays; Fiction; Nonfiction; Poetry;
Areas include: Autobiography; Nature; Short Stories;
Markets: Adult;
Preferred styles: Literary

Publishes poetry, fiction, and essays that offer an unexpected take on the natural world. Send one piece of prose or up to five poems by email.

[See the full listing]

How do you write a novel? A draft in time saves nine

irishtimes.com – Thursday November 14, 2019

I’m often asked about the best way to write a novel’s first draft, and thank God for that, for otherwise I’d have no social life at all.

For some reason it generally seems to happen when I discover myself at the bottom of Dawson Street around lunchtime, waiting to cross over to the Trinity side.

“I say, Mr Burke!” bawls some aspiring scribe who, having recently perambulated around from College Green, has mistaken me for that prime hunk of literary boulevardier, Edmund Burke. “How does one go about writing a novel-length story?”

“Well,” I bawl back, which usually precipitates something of a conversational longueur, it being my accoster’s expectation that I have deployed same as a precursor to embarking on lengthy disquisition, whereas my advice in the matter of writing novel-length stories is as brief as it is simple, ie, that if they must be written at all, then they really ought to be written well.

[Read the full article]

Strong year for Children's publishing as W H Smith unveils Books of the Year

thebookseller.com – Thursday November 14, 2019

W H Smith has unveiled its Books of the Year, with the retailer recognising two children's books for the first time.

In recognition of the "diverse choice across children’s publishing and the importance it plays in supporting literacy and engagement in young readers", W H Smith has chosen both bestselling rhyming read-aloud picture book Oi Puppies! (Hodder Children's Books) by Kes Gray and Jim Field, and the inclusive Izzy Gizmo and the Invention Convention (Simon & Schuster Children's UK) by Pip Jones and Sara Ogilvie as its Children's Books of the Year. 

Beth O'Leary's debut novel The Flatshare (Quercus), which has sold 15,362 copies through TCM, has been named Fiction Book of the Year. W H Smith said the "brilliant rom-com" story of Tiffy and Leon who share a flat but have never met is "one of the most uplifting debuts of 2019". 

[Read the full article]

One long sentence, 1,000 pages: Lucy Ellmann 'masterpiece' wins Goldsmiths prize

theguardian.com – Thursday November 14, 2019

Lucy Ellmann’s 1,000-page novel Ducks, Newburyport has won the £10,000 Goldsmiths prize for “fiction at its most novel”, praised by judges as a “masterpiece”.

Ducks, Newburyport is the stream-of-consciousness internal monologue of a mother in Ohio as she bakes pies in her kitchen. Made up of one long run-on sentence, with interludes from the perspective of a mountain lion, its ambitious form led to it being turned down by Ellmann’s previous publisher, Bloomsbury. It later found a home at independent press Galley Beggar and was shortlisted for this year’s Booker prize.

Chair of judges, Erica Wagner called the novel “that rare thing: a book which, not long after its publication, one can unhesitatingly call a masterpiece”.

[Read the full article]

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