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20 August 2018 - What's new

20 August 2018
  • ‘This is the year in which I get to smile at all of those naysayers: every single mediocre, insecure wannabe who fixes their mouth to suggest that I do not belong on this stage, that people like me cannot possibly have earned such an honor, and that when they win it's meritocracy, but when we win it's identity politics...' N K Jemisin, in her acceptance speech after winning the Hugo Award for the third year in a row for The Stone Sky, the last in her Broken Earth fantasy trilogy. Our Comment
  • If you're looking for a report on your manuscript, how do you work out which one of our four would suit you best? Which Report? includes our new top-of-the range service, the Editor's Report Plus, introduced by popular demand to provide even more detail. This very substantial report takes the form of a chapter-by-chapter breakdown and many writers have found this detail helps them to get their book right. Through our specialist children's editors we can offer reports on children's books.
  • The Women's Poetry and Pamphlet Competitions 2018 are now run by MslexiaStylish and lively site for quarterly UK literary magazine read by 12,000 'committed' women writers. Good range of quality writing, information and advice with news, reviews, competitions and interviews, all presented in a friendly fashion. Praised by Helen Dunmore as 'astute, invigorating and above all an excellent read.' and their new partner the Poetry Book SocietySpecialist book club founded by T S Eliot in 1953, which aims to offer the best new poetry published in the UK and Ireland. Members buy at 25% discount. The PBS has a handsome new website at They're open to women of any nationality from any country, and welcome single poems in any style, of any length, on any subject for the Poetry Competition and short collections of 20-24 pages of 18-20 poems for the Pamphlet Competition. Entry fee: Poetry £10 Pamphlet £20. POETRY: First Prize £2000 plus publication in both Mslexia and the PBS Bulletin, Second Prize £400, Third Prize £200. PAMPHLET: Publication by Seren BooksClick for Seren Books Publishers References listing. Closing 13 September.
  • Poets are naturally keen to see their work in print but it's actually quite hard to get a first collection taken on by a publisher and self-publishing may make a lot of sense. Getting your poetry published.
  • A must-read for children's authors is Suzy Jenvey's special series for WritersServices, the four-part Essential Guide to Writing for Children. The first article looks at the all-important question of age groups and what you should be aware of in writing for each one. The second part is - Before You Write: What is My Story Going to be? The third part deals with Starting to Write and the fourth part is about Submitting Your Work to Agents and Editors. This series by a hugely experienced children's editorial director and agent helps you get started on your own story or develop what you're already working on.
  • News Review reports on China - for the first time, British publishers will form the biggest contingent at the upcoming Beijing International Book Fair. There will be 33 companies on the collective stand and 56 firms in all represented at the Fair, reports the Bookseller. Also the rather astounding news that a study commissioned by the UK Publishers Association got it wrong, total payments consumer authors received in 2016 were not £161m, but £350m.
  • Our links: in an open letter addressed to members of the Authors' Guild, a warning from the organization's vice president, Author Richard Russo Warns of Tech Giants' Move Into Content for Writers; a great book cover, a marketing plan, and a cool author website are all important, but if an author hasn't spent the time and money for a solid editing job, it's all just wasted effort, Everyone Needs an Editor; a new, dedicated children's publishing strand, to help cater to a "booming" market for kids' books in China, Beijing's inaugural kids' stream to address fast-growing sector | The Bookseller; and the type of book you're printing, your budget, your plans for online distribution, whether you want to distribute to brick-and-mortar bookstores, and the quality of the printers, are the things to take into account, argues this carefully researched article, What is the Best Service for Print on Demand Books? • The Reedsy Blog.
  • 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.
  • More links: how long-form immersive reading has become a tall order, New Report: American Teens Spend Less Time Reading; a lovely antidote to all the hand-wringing and hair-tearing and sit-at-the-typwriter-and-bleeding contemporary writers seem to do, Ray Bradbury's Greatest Writing Advice | Literary Hub; and a silly season story, or are cats always in season? From Chester Himes to Judy Blume, 10 Writers and Their Cats | Literary Hub.
  • 'I discovered that if I trusted my subconscious, or imagination, whatever you want to call it, and if I made the characters as real and honest as I could, then no matter how complex the pattern being woven, my subconscious would find ways to tie it together - often doing things far more complicated and sophisticated than I could with brute conscious effort.' Fantasy author Tad Williamson in our Writers' Quotes.