Skip to Content

12 September 2016 - What's new

12 September 2016
  • Bowker has published a huge report on self-publishing in the US and, although the detailed figures are rather dry, some of the conclusions are quite explosive in their picture of a rapidly growing self-publishing scene. And where America goes, other countries tend to follow, although not at a uniform speed. Our News Review is entitled New Report shows massive increase in self-publishing.
  • Closing on 31 October is this week's Writing Opportunity, the big international National Poetry CompetitionAnnual poetry prize run by the UK-based Poetry Society established in 1978; accepts entries from all over the world; over 10,000 poems submitted each year 2016, which is open to anyone from anywhere in the world aged 17 or over at the time of entering. Entry fees: first poem £6.50, subsequent entries £3.50 per poem. First prize £5000, Second prize £2000, Third prize £1000.
  • Your submission package - 'Given the difficulty of getting agents and publishers to take on your work, it's really important to make sure that you present it in the best possible way. Less is more, so don't send a full manuscript, as it's very unlikely to be read. Far better to tempt them with a submission package that will leave them wanting to see the rest of the manuscript...'
  • ‘Crowd funding can be quite arduous and you have to be persistent... But if you stop, then the funding dries up pretty quickly. You have to keep going and you need to be of a mindset that you're happy to do that. If you're an author who's so involved in the creative process that you're not interested in getting involved with your readers, then it's probably not the route for you...' David Roche, whose book is being published by the relatively young crowd-funding publisher Unbound and is now fully funded, which means it will hit the shelves sometime next year. Our Comment.
  • Do you need to get your material typed up, but can't face doing the job yourself? We can provide a clean typed version of your work at very competitive rates. Our service offers help for writers who have an old or handwritten manuscript, or audio tapes, which need re-typing before the writer can proceed with submission or publication.
  • Our links: from an author for whom self-publishing was only a back-up plan, Self-Published Book Beats the Odds By Making New York Times Bestseller List | Huffington Post; if prizes are about boosting the book trade then the Booker prize shortlist is not a good one, Booker prize may not have starry names, but it does generate curiosity | Books | The Guardian; the fascinating story of the rise of fan-fiction, Online Harry Potter fans transformed what it means to love a story; and in the week of the hundredth anniversay of his birth, 'Let me reverse your threat': how 'bullying' Roald Dahl was fired by his publisher.
  • Bob's Journal is a long-running column from writer Bob Ritchie described by fellow EastEnders script-writer Pippa McCarthy: 'Just discovered your web page... I've just spent the last hour crying with laughter with periodic yelps of 'been there!'... I'm going to make my entire family read your diary. Then perhaps will understand own bizarre behaviour every time I start a script... Anyway, will shut up now but just wanted to say you have cheered me up no end. It's brilliant.'
  • If you should happen to be in London this weekend, make tracks for Free Verse, the annual Poetry Book Fair, to find out what small poetry presses and their poets are up to, attend free events and buy books and pamphlets!
  • More links: some writing advice from well-known authors, My best writing tip by William Boyd, Jeanette Winterson, Amit Chaudhuri and more | Books | The Guardian; the percentage of American adults reading literature has hit a low of 43 percent, Americans aren't reading less -- they're just reading less literature | Minnesota Public Radio News; and ebooks are not taking over the world! A Return to Print? Not Exactly - Bloomberg View.
  • 'Most beginning writers (and I was the same) are like chefs trying to cook great dishes that they've never tasted themselves. How can you make a great (or even an adequate) bouillabaisse if you've never had any? Daniel Quinn in our Writers' Quotes.