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Writers' News

Don’t like the way you write? An artificial intelligence app promises to polish your prose

qz.com – Friday March 10, 2017

I am a professional writer, but I often hate my writing. I wish it was more concise and powerful. And it certainly doesn’t read as smoothly as the work of my literary heroes. Recently, I began to wonder: Could a software program make me better at my job?

The Hemingway App, an online writing editor created in 2013 by brothers Adam and Ben Long, promises to do just that. “Hemingway makes your writing bold and clear,” the site claims, so that “your reader will focus on your message, not your prose.” If you listen to the app’s advice, it will rid your writing of run-on sentences, needless adverbs, passive voice, and opaque words. There’s no guarantee you’ll crank out the next Farewell to Arms—but the goal is to get you closer to Ernest Hemingway’s clear, minimalist style.

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From 'alibi' to 'mauve': what famous writers' most used words say about them

theguardian.com – Friday March 10, 2017

When Ray Bradbury was asked to contribute his favourite word for the 1995 book The Logophile’s Orgy, he chose cinnamon: “The word cinnamon derives, I suppose, from visiting my grandma’s pantry when I was a kid. I loved to read the labels on spice boxes; curries from far places in India and cinnamons from across the world.”

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Video: Children's writing fellowship announced in Seamus Heaney's honour

irishnews.com – Thursday March 9, 2017

A new 'children's writing fellow' honouring Seamus Heaney and his contribution to literature, is to be appointed to inspire future generations of creative talent.

Developed by the Arts Council of Northern Ireland and Queen's University Belfast, the two year, part-time post will attract £15,000 a year.

Once in post, the children's writing fellow will perform a range of duties designed to promote an interest in reading and writing from an early age by encouraging creativity and engagement with books.

[Read the full article]

Australian science fiction authors feel let down by local publishers

abc.net.au – Thursday March 9, 2017

While the overall Australian publishing scene is robust, Australian science fiction writers believe their work is not being adequately supported by the industry.

"It's quite difficult to get a science fiction novel published by an Australian publisher," says Cat Sparks, a publisher of science fiction anthologies.

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Ritchie leaves Curtis Brown for A M Heath

thebookseller.com – Thursday March 9, 2017

Literary agent Rebecca Ritchie is leaving Curtis Brown after five years to join A M Heath.

Ritchie is moving to her new role on 18th April to develop her list of commercial fiction and non-fiction. As well as co-founding Twitter initiative #PitchCB, Ritchie has worked alongside Sheila Crowley and represented authors herself such as Red magazine’s literary editor Sarra Manning, Alex Lake, author of After Anna (Harper), the Sunday Times Top 10 paperback bestseller and Iona Grey, author of last year’s overall Romantic Novel of the Year Letters to the Lost (Simon & Schuster).

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New Literary Agency Listing

firstwriter.com – Thursday March 9, 2017

Handles: Fiction; Nonfiction
Markets: Children's; Youth

UK office of established US agency. UK agent handles fiction and nonfiction for children and young adults, but no material for adults, or picture books. Agents in the US office do consider material for adults. See website for submission guidelines.

[See the full listing]

Writing poetry in the age of Twitter and Facebook: 'there are no answers, only questions'

list.co.uk – Wednesday March 8, 2017

Poet Christodoulos Makris did something very brave for his assignment at StAnza. With the best intentions in mind, he asked people to send him links to 'anything they found interesting on the internet'. The first question I ask him is the obvious one: did you get sent anything, well, dodgy? 'No,' he laughs. 'Just links to things I wouldn't normally have come across.'

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New Publisher Listing

firstwriter.com – Wednesday March 8, 2017

Publishes: Fiction; Nonfiction; 
Markets: Children's

Publish children's fiction and nonfiction that has an educational aspect. Send query by email with up to first 50 pages as Word attachment.

[See the full listing]

Learning to code can transform your writing, not just your website

thebookseller.com – Tuesday March 7, 2017

I came to coding like a mute. When I went to a conference presenting a new coding language from Google called Go last month, I realised I couldn't understand what was being said. Later I met with Inês Teles, director of London coding bootcamp Founders & Coders, curious to learn how coding could push my own writing project. But I couldn't explain my ideas as my language wouldn't translate into hers.

“What do you want to do with it?” A simple question I was unable to answer. However, I was told that, if you know how to write code, you can pretty much do anything. So I went along and started learning the basics of web development, starting with HTML and CSS. Little did I realise just how much learning code would teach me about language of the other kind.

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New Magazine Listing

firstwriter.com – Tuesday March 7, 2017

Publishes: Articles; Fiction; Interviews; Nonfiction; Poetry; Reviews; 
Areas include: Arts; Criticism; Literature; Short Stories; 
Markets: Adult; 
Preferred styles: Literary

Publishes previously unpublished poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, and critical nonfiction (about literature and occasionally about visual art). Submit up to 10 pages of fiction; up to 6 pages of poetry; or up to two piece of nonfiction, via online submission system. See website for full details.

[See the full listing]

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