June 24th, 2016
I’m delighted to have this opportunity to re-introduce myself as a tutor after a few years away following a bereavement.
For those of you who read Writing Magazine, you probably know me best as the columnist of ‘Notes from the Margin’ – the humorous final page. The reason I mention this is because I owe my long-running column (seven years and counting) directly to the Writers Bureau course.
I started my writing career many, many years ago as a student and only signed up because I wanted to learn how to write fiction for the women’s magazine market! Instead of starting with the fiction modules, as I could have done, I wanted to learn all I could about writing and elected to take the comprehensive course. As a result, every assignment led to work being published in a vast variety of magazines in several countries – and one of the assignments also brought about my first humour column in Living France Magazine. Read the rest of this entry »
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June 17th, 2016
Love it or hate it, the football is with us until 10th July! For some of you out there it will be the perfect excuse to put your writing to one side and not think about it again until the final penalties (if it goes to penalties) have been taken. For others, it’s the perfect opportunity to read more and write more. Let’s be honest, there’s not much on the other TV channels to grab your interest – especially if you’re old-fashioned like me and don’t have Sky, Now TV, Netflix or any of the other subscription packages.
So, I’ve stocked up with lots of great books, bought myself some new gardening gloves and plenty of insect repellent for when I’m working outside in the evening. I’ve also got one or two ‘outings’ planned – without my husband, who’ll be glued to the TV. And it’s this ‘me time’ that I hope will provide some inspiration. Often it’s getting away from the normal routine and trying something different (even if it’s only a local trip) that gives you the inspiration you need to move forward with your writing. If you’re a football widow (or widower) for the next couple of weeks, why not try it? Read the rest of this entry »
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June 10th, 2016
The weather has been wonderful recently and I managed to get away for a few days to glorious Wiltshire for some walking. At this time of year I’m sure many writers’ thoughts turn wistfully to travel journalism and how to break into the market. Sounds glamorous and glitzy, doesn’t it? But a word of warning: until you’re established, and have a track record, hotels and airlines aren’t going to throw freebies at you. So, it’s important that you make a name for yourself if you’re going to create a career in travel writing. Here are some tips to get you on the way:
It’s not where you go, but what you uncover when you get there that’s important. Try to find an unexpected angle: what a resort or tourist destination is like out of season; the opening of a new venture, such as a theme park or perhaps you could tie in your article with a new TV series or film. Never write about the routine – only the remarkable. Read the rest of this entry »
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June 3rd, 2016
Have you picked up on the fact that a Gobblefunk Dictionary is being released to celebrate the 100-year anniversary of Roald Dahl’s birth? As you probably know, he loved using made-up words in his writing – because it added colour to the stories and also to keep his readers on their toes.
My favourites include delumptious (delicious), ucky-mucky (messy) and squibbling (writing). The dictionary will contain over 8000 words – many that appear in his books but also some from the archives, which never saw the light of day – and it’s taken five years to put together. Read the rest of this entry »
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