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21 July 2014 - What's new

21 July 2014
  • Freya North on writer's block, Nicola Solomon berates publishers, Joanne PhillipsUK-based freelance writer and ghostwriter. She has had articles published in national writing magazines, and has ghostwritten books on subjects as diverse as hairdressing and keeping chickens. Visit her at on the business of writing, Best European Fiction 2016 and some great links, such as Does crime writing have a misogynistic heart? are all in this week's What's New.
  • In an extraordinary change of approach, Nicola Solomon, the Secretary of the UK Society of Authors, has attacked publishers, saying that ‘Traditional publishing is 'no longer fair or sustainable'. ‘Authors need fair remuneration if they are to keep writing and producing quality work. Publisher profits are holding up and, broadly, so are total book sales if you include ebooks but authors are receiving less per book and less overall due mainly to the fact that they are only paid a small percentage of publishers' net receipts on ebooks and because large advances have gone except for a handful of celebrity authors.' News Review
  • The Business of Writing: 'Writing is undoubtedly a creative art. Whether we are working on the next Booker Prize winner or ghostwriting blog posts, writers need to be original, imaginative and inspired. But writing is also a business, with invoices to raise, accounts to be submitted and records to be kept. Writers, like artists, can find themselves floundering when it comes to the ‘business end' of the job. Read on for our easy-to-follow guide to the business of writing...' Joanne Phillips has updated her extremely useful article. Next week we'll feature her new article, The Business of Writing for Self-publishers.
  • Our Picture libraries page has a useful list of places to go if you need to source images for your book.
  • ‘It was terrifying. I thought: "That's it, I only have 12 books in me." I was so sufficiently ill with it that I had to go to a doctor. For six months I couldn't write and I didn't tell anyone. It wasn't that I didn't know what to write, it was that I couldn't get the damn thing out. In the end, I literally pulled myself down to the library, sat there and dragged it out word after word. I didn't plan it, I started on chapter one and just saw where it went...' Freya North, author of 13 novels, most recently The Way Back Home, in the Bookseller on the dreaded writer's block, quoted in our Comment column.
  • This week's Writing Opportunity is the Dalkey Archive's Best European Fiction 2016, a chance for translators to get their work in this prestigious anthology.  It's closing on 15 August.
  • Our links this week offer a chance to read the full press story on Nicola Solomon's comments on publishers, Traditional publishing is 'no longer fair or sustainable', says Society of Authors | Books |; Crime fiction might be dominated by violence against women - but there's more to it than titillation in Does crime writing have a misogynistic heart? - Telegraph; what does it mean to cry over a book, Crying While Reading Through the Centuries : The New Yorker; a 6,000 word story on Twitter, David Mitchell tells Twitter story | The Bookseller; are publishers guilty of bad conduct too ? The Publishers Are as Bad as Amazon | Thomas Hauser; and a new prize opens up African writing to a wider readership, Okwiri Oduor Wins 15th Caine Prize for African Writing | Publishing Perspectives.
  • "If you don't have time to read, you don't have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that." - Stephen King. Author opinion falls into two camps on this one, with some writers maintaining that reading fiction while writing is a very bad thing... Many other authors, however, believe the opposite to be true, that reading and being well-read is essential to good writing, and it is this argument that I am exploring here. Writing for Children: Rule Number One - Read More than You Write.
  • 'No poet, no artist of any art has his complete meaning alone. His significance, his appreciation is the appreciation of his relation to the dead poets and artists.' T S Eliot in our Writers' Quotes.