First, thanks to Mary for last week’s blog. I’ve been on holiday; so it was great not to have to think up something to post while I was away. I’ve always wanted to go to Costa Rica and despite the trip down to Gatwick (no flights direct from Manchester) and 11 hours in the air it was terrific. Blue skies, lush greenery and animals galore. At the top of my wish list of beasties to see was the sloth! I wasn’t bothered about the monkeys, the crocodiles, the kinkajou… or even the rather attractive tarantula that popped up near the path one day. All I wanted was a real, live sloth. And, dear reader, I got plenty of them, hanging high in the trees. They might be slow but they’re not daft; so they stay high enough not to get caught which makes taking good photos difficult unless you’ve got a very high spec camera!
On the way home I was reading a book that had been recommended to me – Denise Mina’s The End of the Wasp Season. I’m not a great fan of crime fiction, but I really enjoyed it. But what really struck me was the coincidence of the fact that I’d just uploaded Mary’s blog where she talks about the ‘unreliable narrator’ and here was a book using just this technique to keep the suspense going. And it worked a treat!
A few weeks ago I mentioned that our latest short story competition was now open. Entries have started coming in, so it’s time to start writing your story/ies if you’ve not already got something planned. There is a 2000-word limit (which gives you plenty of scope for plot and characterisation) and the closing date is 31st March. Prizes are: 1st – £300; 2nd – £200; 3rd – £100 and 4th – £50. In addition each winner can choose a Writers Bureau Course of their choice worth over £350. The entry fee is £5 per story, or £4 if you are a member of the Association of Freelance Writers.
Finally, for those of you who enjoy writing poetry, you might want to consider taking part in the Ver Poets Open Competition. The prizes are £600, £300 and £100 and selected poems will be published in an anthology that you can buy. The closing date is 30th April.
Next week my guest will be another Mary, but this time Mary Walton who’s going to give you Eight Proofreading Techniques To Up Your Creative Writing Game. In the meantime, if you feel that proofreading and copy editing might be for you (either as a freelance career or to improve your writing) then you might consider enrolling on might consider enrolling on the Writers Bureau course.
Author: Diana Nadin
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