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28 July 2014 - What's new

28 July 2014
  • Our latest new article is The Business of Writing for Self-publishing Authors and we also have a focus on poetry this week in our News Review and links, as well as the Hot Key Books Young Writers Prize 2014, a superb opportunity for 18-25 writers from all over the world to  have a chance at a big prize and publication by one of the UK's newest children's 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, author of our WritersServices Self-publishng Guide and of The Business of Writing, has now turned her attention to self-publishers with The Business of Writing for Self-publishing Authors. 'Self-publishing authors - also known as ‘indie' authors or author-publishers - have had a steep learning curve these past few years. Getting to grips with the various sales channels available to them, producing top quality ebooks and paperbacks, and finding a place in mainstream outlets have left many writers struggling to keep up with the paperwork. What follows is brief guide to the essentials your self-publishing business needs - because it is a business, even if you only publish one book!'
  • As two of this week's links demonstrate, poetry is contradictory in its audience and reach. A huge audience is interested in poetry - more than one million people read poems at each year. But on the other hand poetry book sales, in the US as elsewhere, are meagre for all but the very best-known poets. How is it that an artform which seems central to literature, offering distilled language and meaning in a succinct form, can be so easily ignored by many in the mainstream? In theory this should be poetry's moment, for the short form is perfect for the Internet. News Review
  • Have you ever wondered whether there's any point in entering competitions? Someone must be winning, but why is it somehow never you? It might be worth reviewing how you approach competitions, to see if you can achieve a better result. Entering competitions.
  • 'I'm amazingly fortunate to have a chance to write a second book that people will be interested in reading because they liked the first. It would be awfully pessimistic if an author with enthusiastic potential readers sat around in anguish...The book has your chromosomes all the way through it, you feel squeamish about someone critiquing your inner life...' Tom Rachman, author of The Imperfectionists and The Rise and Fall of Great Powers, in the Evening Standard, quoted in our Comment column.
  • Are you a young writer aged 18-25 writing YA? There's a brilliant opportunity this week in the Hot Key Young Writers Prize, where the prize is £10,000 and a publishing contract with Hot Key. Closing on 16 August, so you need to get moving.
  • We have two llinks this week which cast a clear light on poetry, Poetry Matters | Academy of American Poets and a wide-ranging look at poetry in America, The Millions : Americans Love Poetry, But Not Poetry Books. Then there's the latest on the Man Booker longlist, Man Booker 2014: more global, less diverse | Books | The Guardian; Self-publishing surging to 31% of ebook market, claims report | Books |; and a new second-hand books initiative which will pay royalties to authors, Authors' Licensing and Collecting Society Do the right thing Bookbarn International.
  • Our Glossary of Acronyms is a good way of finding your way through these confusing initials.
  • 'To be a writer is to sit down at one's desk in the chill portion of every day, and to write; not waiting for the little jet of the blue flame of genius to start from the breastbone - just plain going at it, in pain and delight. To be a writer is to throw away a great deal, not to be satisfied, to type again, and then again, and once more, and over and over.' John Hersey in our Writers' Quotes.