Photo by Felipe Cespedes on Pexels.com When Kate Mildenhall asked Tony Birch what he'd change about the publishing industry on the always fabulous First Time Podcast recently, he responded with the wish that publishers would take more chances on debut writers, making the observation that it can be soul-destroying to write a novel that never … Continue reading What if you never get that book published?
Bouddi National Park A good friend and glorious writer admitted this week to being 'at sea' with her writing. Traditionally published with no shortage of accolades or experience, she is currently pitching her new novel—her baby—to agents and publishers. And so far she's had to deal with several rejections and worse: silence. In an attempt … Continue reading How to write through rejection and silence
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com Writing competitions can provide wonderful opportunities for emerging writers. The prospect of raising your head above the sea of other unpublished writers with a prestigious win or shortlisting, and perhaps attracting the attention of an agent or publisher, is irresistible. Or the lure of a cash windfall. Some offer publication … Continue reading What makes a writing competition worth the entry fee?
Photo by RODNAE Productions on Pexels.com I've been playing at being a writer for nine years now, almost a decade. It came as something of a shock when I calculated the time since I first put fingers to keyboard, because I often feel like a beginner. To be fair, the first four years were a … Continue reading Eight things I wish I’d known when I started writing
Photo by Lisa Fotios on Pexels.com A writer I follow on Twitter recently tweeted about a rejection she received from a literary agent. Apparently the agent loved her story but didn't feel she had enough of a platform to take her on as a client. While there are authors who wow agents and publishers with … Continue reading How to build an author platform (and still find time to write that book)
Photo by Jeffrey Czum on Pexels.co When you set your sights on traditional publication, at every stage of the process your success relies on convincing others of your worth: agents, publishers, reviewers, readers. You are constantly seeking external validation. And most of the time, when hundreds apply for every opportunity, that validation is not forthcoming. … Continue reading Self-confidence is a decision
Photo by Brett Sayles on Pexels. Over the years, I've submitted many short stories to international literary journals. Most of the work I've had published overseas, though, has been in the UK and Ireland. As I contemplate approaching overseas agents for representation of my psychological suspense novel, I've been wondering about expectations for manuscripts submitted … Continue reading Should you use American English for submissions to US agents and publishers?
Photo by Lisa Fotios on Pexels.com In the last few months, we've all been affected by the global pandemic. Not one of us has escaped. Some have lost jobs or loved ones, some have faced the stress of exposure to the virus at work, and others are dealing with disrupted routines and the nightmare juggle … Continue reading The importance of kindness in the #WritingCommunity
Photo by Immortal shots on Pexels.com The business of being a writer is inherently disappointing if your mark of success is achieving traditional publication or winning prizes. Although many of us harbour these desires, these glittering goals, the reality is that few writers, even successful ones, end up collecting a pile of accolades. Or sales. … Continue reading Small acts of validation: the importance of connecting with readers
Photo by Gratisography on Pexels.com After years of taking writing seriously, of small successes and countless not-so-near misses, two upcoming events have triggered my fear of failure. Big time. I usually try to ignore the fear and press on, but this time I feel the need to address it. It’s time to talk about the … Continue reading Hello imposter syndrome, my old ‘friend’.