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Writers' News

Writers competing with the next Scandi noir, says Ian Rankin

telegraph.co.uk – Sunday March 13, 2016

British writers are facing more competition than ever as publishers turn their eyes to finding the next big foreign cultural craze to replicate the success of Scandinavian noir, Ian Rankin has said.

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Thirties crime fiction has spared more women a grisly end

telegraph.co.uk – Sunday March 13, 2016

They have already been credited with rejuvenating the book market, as real paper novels battle back against the rise of ebooks.

But it appears the decorative classic book covers so popular with modern readers have had one other inadvertent benefit: a boost for feminism.

The trend for ornate retro book covered has made classic 1930s crime fashionable once again, bringing a trend for brutal misogynistic killings to an end, according to authors.

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A boom in the business of literary agents in India

dnaindia.com – Sunday March 13, 2016

For publishers looking to bet on the next, potential big selling author, Aditya Mukherjee would seem to tick all the right boxes — he is an MBA from an IIM, a start-up entrepreneur and his 2013 book Boomtown is a pacey, good read. Yet, when he'd finished writing Boomtown, Mukherjee had little idea what to do. He didn't know any commissioning editors, how to get his manuscript across to them, or make sure they read it. Being the enterprising kind, he read up on the subject and decided that he needed an agent to represent him. He got himself one — Mumbai-based Purple Folio, started by Urmila Dasgupta, and in three months, he had a deal with Rupa.

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Powerful Writing App Ulysses Launches on the iPhone

lifehacker.co.uk – Saturday March 12, 2016

Popular writing app Ulysses has been available for some time on desktop and iPad devices, enabling those who need to write regularly, like journalists, writers or teachers to use its clean interface and easy organisational structure to find what they need fast and write, write, write with no distractions.

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Major publishers’ e-book sales stagnate as overall market grows

seattletimes.com – Thursday March 10, 2016

While sales of e-books from major publishers have declined since 2014 — the year many gained the right to price their digital titles sold through Amazon — the overall market continues to progress, helped by independent and nontraditional publishing.

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Tax Court Holds That Family Vacations Are Not Deductible As Book-Writing Research

forbes.com – Thursday March 10, 2016

For the past few years, I’ve harbored the hope that I would author a children’s book. Unfortunately, I’ve encountered two small problems that have thus far kept me from fulfilling my goal:

  1. I have no ideas, and
  2. I have no talent.

Should those two things change, however, I’ll be off and running. And once that happens, I had hoped to turn my two kids into what I always dreamed they’d become: big ol’ tax deductions.

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What Big Publishing Consolidation Means for Authors

huffingtonpost.com – Wednesday March 9, 2016

So, the Hachette Book Group is acquiring the Perseus Books Group again, 18 months after its first failed attempt to do so. This time it looks like the deal will stick, though.

If you read industry news deals or press releases, you'll see all kinds of positive spin on deals like these. This is the third major publishing merger in the past three-plus years, preceded by the 2013 merger between Penguin and Random House and the acquisition earlier that same year of Harlequin by HarperCollins. The companies like to talk about expanding their global reach and investing in broadening their lists. And while these corporate agendas sound good on paper, the consolidation of publishing is not good for authors.

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The simple truth behind suspenseful writing

bostonglobe.com – Tuesday March 8, 2016

With simple words, suspenseful stories thrill and chill us.

In Stephen King's The Shining, there's a heart-pounding moment when young Danny once again finds himself standing outside Room 217 of the Overlook Hotel.

Despite being warned not to enter, he puts a key into the lock. He turns the knob.

It's enough to make my palms sweat.

Good suspenseful stories elicit strong emotions, even when we know what happens next. Now, a team of academics at Stanford University has identified what prompts those feelings. Surprisingly, it often comes down to the use of simple words and sentence patterns. So simple, in fact, that the team trained a computer program to accurately predict when a written passage will be suspenseful.

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Proselint is a "style checker" for your writing

boingboing.net – Tuesday March 8, 2016

Proselint isn't a grammar checker. It's a "style" checker, warning writers when their work is hackneyed, inconsistent or very obviously not great.

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One-handed typing improves prose, research suggests

alphr.com – Tuesday March 8, 2016

Nothing highlights someone unused to hammering away at a computer keyboard more than the use of a single digit, hunting down each character slowly and deliberately. But while you may finish your emails first, they’ll have the last laugh. It turns out this is very much like the tortoise and the hare: slow and steady wins the race – at least in terms of quality.

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