September 28th, 2015
Once a month I write a piece for this blog about ‘useful websites,’ and over the past year I’ve covered a lot of stuff: online dictionaries; international associations; writing competitions; self-publishing; website building … it’s become quite a list. But one thing I’ve never mentioned is the blog itself.
The Writers Bureau blog has been running for six years now, and though I’ve already put up seventy posts since starting in August 2014, I’m still just the new kid in town. Diana Nadin (our Director of Studies) has been posting since day one, and many of our tutors and successful students have posts going right back to the early days. Generally these pieces are short, anecdotal essays, but they’re also a good source of practical advice and information, with links to numerous articles and external sites providing all sorts of resources for writers. Read the rest of this entry »
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June 8th, 2015
Our kids dragged us to the Manchester Film and Comic Con last weekend. Well, I say dragged … I was more excited than them. It was a huge event, packed with dealers, big screen TVs, an auditorium for talks, and rows of desks where celeb’s were signing graphic novels, DVDs, original artwork, baseball caps, etc.
My ten year old son was after ‘retro’ games, and we soon found some. So while he hummed and hahed over Pokemon and Donkey Kong I had a look round. I noticed one particular table which was quite simple (by comic con standards.) On a plain black cloth, it held just a few piles of books, all copies of four paperbacks that were neatly laid out on display – all clearly part of a series. Behind the table was a woman in a striking outfit – part Tolkien’s Rivendell, part Mos Eisley spaceport.
“Are you the author?” I said.
“Yes,” she said
And that’s how I came to meet the inspirational C. G. Hatton. Read the rest of this entry »
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May 26th, 2015
Have you come across Wattpad? I just discovered it a couple of days ago and … I’m in two minds. Where I can see there’s definitely something interesting going on, I’m not really sure it’s for me.
Wattpad is a Canadian based story-sharing website, like a Facebook or Youtube for writers. Stories and poems are shared in over fifty languages, and the stat’s for membership and reading are quite impressive: 40 million users per month with an average user session of thirty minutes. Readers are encouraged to post comments about work they’ve read, writers have profile pages where you can message them privately, and there are a number of Forums where both writers and readers join in extended conversations. Generally, from what I can see, people are serialising novels and putting them up one chapter at a time. Some attract thousands of readers, and one I noticed – Flawed by someone calling themselves bnflan has been read an enormous 2, 410, 414 times. Read the rest of this entry »
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May 11th, 2015
I’m branching out. As well as blogs, songs and stories, I’m going to start writing articles. I know I can do it, and I certainly need the money. So I’m getting organised – ready to work.
First job is setting up my own editorial calendar. And how do you do that? Well, scooting around the internet I found a great series of ‘How To’ articles at Lorelle on WordPress. They’re aimed mainly at bloggers, but I’ve found their tips useful for all sorts of writing jobs. Amongst other things, they pointed me toward a website called timeanddate.com where I’ve customized a calendar covering the whole of the next eighteen months. Telling it where I live, it’s included all my local state and religious holidays, so I now have everything from Pancake Day to Diwali on a massive one page per month wall-hanging that’s going to be the foundation of my article writing campaign. Read the rest of this entry »
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April 27th, 2015
You won’t believe this story, but I’ll tell it anyway because I’m seeing Sally tonight, and that’ll be hard. So, if I try it on you first, I might just get things straight enough in my head to tell her. And then maybe … well … y’know.
Anyway, here it is. Read the rest of this entry »
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