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15 July 2019 - What's new

15 July 2019
  • 'The best books come from someplace deep inside. You don't write because you want to, but because you have to. Become emotionally involved. If you don't care about your characters, your readers won't either. Those of us who write do it because there are stories inside us burning to get out. Writing is essential to our well-being. If you're that kind of writer, never give up! If you start a story and it isn't going well, put it aside... You can start as many as you like because you're writing for yourself. With each story you'll learn more...' Judy Blume, author of Are You there, God? It's Me, Margaret, Otherwise Known as Sheila the Great, Forever, Wifey and 25 other books, which have sold over 85 million copies worldwide, but often been banned. Our Comment.
  • An Editor's Advice is a series of seven articles by one of our editors on really useful subjects for writers such as Manuscript presentation, Doing further drafts and Planning: 'The idea of planning doesn't fit well with the idea of the writer as inspired genius, frantically scribbling away. However, I am willing to bet that, no matter what they would have you think, most successful writers plan as much as they write. They just don't tell you about it. The biggest objection that most inexperienced writers raise when someone broaches the delicate matter of planning is that it will get in the way of their inventive powers. A plan will be like a straitjacket. They'll be stuck with this plan and if they come up with a good idea along the way, they will not be able to use it. They are genuinely horrified at the thought...'
  • If you're planning to submit to agents, you'll want to get your submission package into good shape before getting started, to give your book its best chance.
  • Not long now for young poets 11-17 from anywhere in the world to get their entries in for the wonderful Foyle Young Poets of the Year Award 2019, closing on 31 July. The Curtis Brown First Novel Prize closes on 1 August and The Booklife Prize 2019 is open till 31 August. Other prizes.
  • Our links: sometimes a writer's life can be pretty amazing, From Uber driving to huge book deal: Adrian McKinty's life-changing phone call | Books | The Guardian; "Here's your cover! We hope you like it." Authors Don't Have Much Control Over Covers; Here's Why | Book Riot; it's 10 years since One Day became a publishing phenomenon - a word of mouth sensation that has sold more than five million copies, David Nicholls: Writing new novel 'completely terrifying' - BBC News; and authors can't win, Why should authors read your bad reviews? | Books | The Guardian.
  • Writing Biography & Autobiography is a serialisation from our Archives of the book by Brian D Osborne published by A & C BlackClick for A & C Black Publishers Publishers References listing. In the first excerpt, Managing the matters of truth and objectivity, the author says: 'Just as you need to remember that letters, reports, census forms, legal documents and so forth were not created simply for our convenience, so you also need to remember that what is written in them may not be true...'
  • Which service should I choose to help me get my work into good shape for submission or self-publishing? This is the question our page Which service? answers and it then goes on to give a quick rundown on our 20 editorial services for writers, the biggest range you can find on the internet.
  • More links: it's a bit dry, but this report contains encouraging news about audiobook sales, Audio Publishers Association: Nearly $1 Billion in 2018 Audiobook Sales; when you hear a poem, you meet it in a more intimate space, Podcasts Are Providing A New Way Into Poetry : NPR; and Monica Wood on why sometimes a story demands more than just a plot to move its emotional content forward, Creating Context.
  • If you need to get your material typed up, but can't face doing the job yourself, Typing manuscripts is a service for writers who have an old or handwritten manuscript or audio tapes, which need typing before they can proceed with reworking, submission or publication.
  • 'For me, writing [was] a question of survival...I could not trust anyone, even my family. The atmosphere was so poisoned. People even in your own family could turn you in.' - Gao Xingjian, refering to writing during the Cultural Revolution of Mao Tse-Tung. In our Writers Quotes.