New writing awards to honour leading poet Mairtin Crawford
belfasttelegraph.co.uk – Thursday April 23, 2020
The life and work of the man described by award-winning poet Michael Longley as "a saint of poetry" will be celebrated with the launch of the Mairtin Crawford Awards.
The Awards for Poetry and Short Story 2020 are aimed at writers working towards their first full collection of poetry, short stories or a novel.
Both published and unpublished writers from all over the world are invited to submit poems or a short story. The only stipulations are that entrants must not yet have published a full collection of poetry, short stories or a novel, and entries must be in the English language.
Duffy and Manchester Writing School launch coronavirus poetry project
thebookseller.com – Tuesday April 21, 2020
Poet Carol Ann Duffy and the Manchester Writing School have launched an international poetry project in response to the coronavirus.
WRITE Where We Are NOW will see writers including Duffy, Gillian Allnutt, Raymond Antrobus, Roger McGough and Ian McMillan share new work inspired by the pandemic.
Pembrokeshire's Penfro Book Festival poetry and writing competitions launched
tivysideadvertiser.co.uk – Tuesday April 21, 2020
THE search is launched this week by PENfro Book Festival to find some of the country’s best ‘eco’ poets and short story writers.
Two competitions run by the Festival are linked to the Loving the Earth Green Fair weekend, due to be held at Rhosygilwen, Cilgerran, at the end of August. Results will be revealed at the fair, and if the event is postponed the winners and shortlisted writers in both contests will be announced on the venue’s website.
Poetry competition organiser, Jackie Biggs said: “PENfro Book Festival had planned to run a series of literature related events at Rhosygilwen throughout this year, but while all live events are postponed we can at least continue with our popular competitions.
Opportunity knocks: how lockdown is opening doors for new creative talent
theguardian.com – Sunday April 19, 2020
Cameras have stopped rolling, book launches are postponed and actors are all “resting”. It looks as if nothing is moving in the world of entertainment and storytelling, yet from Hollywood to the major the publishing houses of London and New York, the talent scouts and production companies are working overtime to complete unfinished projects and find new tales to tell.
The frenzy of backroom activity is creating unusual opportunities for novice stars of the future. For once, aspiring writers and wannabe directors are in demand.
A Rainbow Short Story Prize to Beat the Blues
bedfordwritingcompetition.co.uk – Sunday April 19, 2020
Everyone is having to make sacrifices in these dystopian times, but few more so than the over 70s. Not only is this group more vulnerable to coronavirus, but self-isolation is already proving a high price to pay. For some time now, 70 has been the new 50. Fitter than ever before, more socially active and playing a vital part in the lives of children and grandchildren, this generation of The Beatles and The Rolling Stones, has transformed the process of ageing. Not so surprising then that enforced isolation is taking its toll.
Fortunately, technology is proving a life-saver with emails, Skype and Zoom keeping us connected. Newspapers can be downloaded, food delivered by supermarkets. There's even theatre and church service streaming along with virtual poetry meetings and poetry exchange schemes.
The Bedford Competition, a not-for-profit organisation, is also doing its bit by promoting a special Rainbow Prize for the best short stories submitted by anyone 70 years and over, all proceeds going to charities helping victims of Covid-19. Writing a winning story is yet another great way to beat the isolation blues. Bestselling, internationally acclaimed author, Leigh Russell, who is judging the Rainbow Prize, says, "In the current crisis we need stories more than ever, to offer us an escape from the loneliness we are all experiencing. So I am thrilled to be invited to judge the Rainbow Short Story Prize, and look forward to reading your entries."
The Bedford Competition opens 1 May. Entry fee for one short story is £6 or you can enter 3 for £12. First prize is £500 with additional prizes for second and third places. In addition the winning stories will be published in BWC's anthology. And, even if you don't win, there's the satisfaction of knowing you are contributing to a worthy cause. The bigger the number of entries, the bigger the donation we can make.
At the other end of the spectrum, we're offering prizes for the best short story or poem submitted by 17 - 25 year olds.
The spirit of pulling together, as in the war days, has sprung to life again. We may be keeping our distance but we're still reaching out. How long the crisis will last, no one knows. But, as HM, The Queen , movingly reminded us, We Will Meet Again. It will end, and there will be a return to normality, One Sunny Day.
Sphinx Theatre announces £1,000 commissions for female playwrights and new writing lab
thestage.co.uk – Wednesday April 15, 2020
A new writing programme for female playwrights, offering £1,000 seed commissions and support from writers including Winsome Pinnock and April De Angelis, has been launched by Sphinx Theatre.
The pilot writing programme, called Sphinx Lab, and the commissions have been announced to mark the company’s 30th anniversary.
Emerging to mid-career female playwrights can apply for one of 10 commissions by submitting a CV and an example of their work to Sphinx Theatre by June 15. Further opportunities are to be announced for mid-career to established female playwrights.
Caskie and Mushens part ways after three years
thebookseller.com – Wednesday April 15, 2020
After three years working together as Caskie Mushens, literary agents Robert Caskie and Juliet Mushens have decided to work independently.
Each will continue working with their own clients, the pair confirmed.
Faber, Canongate and Profile among indies to furlough staff
thebookseller.com – Tuesday April 14, 2020
Faber, Canongate, Profile, Oneworld and Pushkin Press are among indie publishers who have confirmed to The Bookseller they are temporarily furloughing staff, making use of the government-funded scheme intended to alleviate the business impact of coronavirus. But the scheme also has its critics, with Will Atkinson of Atlantic Books (which is furloughing about 25% of its staff) calling it "clunky" and "completely unsuitable" for the industry.
Andrew Franklin, founder of Profile Books, confirmed: "We've furloughed about 20% of our staff. We asked for volunteers first across all departments, but nobody has been compelled. The criteria we used [took into account] individual wellbeing, the long-term health of the company, and the strain put on the people left behind."
Publishers: Think Like a Kid
blogs.publishersweekly.com – Tuesday April 14, 2020
When we heard the news that one of spring’s most highly anticipated books for kids wouldn’t be coming out until late summer, I’ll be honest: it felt like a gut punch—to kids.
All these children who had just learned they would be sheltering in place at home for weeks to come, whose worlds had shrunk practically to the size of their living rooms, were so in need of the kind of joy a new book by their favorite author brings.
TV Lit Agent Laura Gordon Leaving ICM for CAA Amid Coronavirus Shutdown
variety.com – Sunday April 12, 2020
Hollywood’s talent agencies may be significantly impacted by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, but agents are still making moves in an unprecedented crisis.
Television literary rep Laura Gordon, who has risen from the assistant level at ICM Partners nearly a decade ago to senior agent, left the shop amicably this week after the expiration of her contract, sources said. CAA is in the process of finalizing her deal, added another insider.
Gordon will join a company that has just instituted across-the-board salary reductions, not to mention one of the majors currently in a contentious battle with the Writers Guild of America over packaging fees. It was not immediately clear if Gordon will be subjected to the cuts made across CAA, which will see “our highest compensated colleagues shouldering a greater responsibility,” a CAA spokesperson said this week.