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Beating Writers’ Block

September 27th, 2019

First, thanks to Sheila for last week’s blog. It was so packed with useful information and I can’t wait to read her latest novel when it comes out at the beginning of next year. 

At some point in their career many writers suffer from the dreaded ‘writers’ block’.  Other writers claim that there’s no such thing!  They say that you don’t get ‘plumber’s block’ or ‘bank manager’s block’ and if you were a staff journalist on a newspaper and complained of writers’ block you’d soon find yourself out of a job.

Also, there are two rather different scenarios.  In the first, you can be part way through a novel or piece of non-fiction and suddenly you’re unable to take it any further.  In the second, you just can’t think what to write about – you’re stuck for ideas and need inspiration (and, perhaps a little boost to your confidence).  The following tips can apply to both Read the rest of this entry »




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Top Tips For Finding A Literary Agent

September 20th, 2019

If you want to be a novelist, sooner or later you’ll face the difficult decision of whether to self-publish or go down the traditional route of finding a publisher. For anyone hoping to find a publisher, it’s highly likely (and, in most cases, advisable) to first seek representation from a literary agent.

Why do you need an agent?

The majority of publishers will not accept manuscripts directly from authors. If you are serious about getting published by a reputable publishing house, you need an agent. Of course, agents do more than just find you a publisher. A good agent acts like your best writing buddy – they support you, help you come up with ideas for books they think will sell, give feedback on your work, negotiate contracts on your behalf and help you build your writing career. Read the rest of this entry »




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Proofing Your Way To Perfection

September 13th, 2019

First, thanks to Tracey for last week’s honest blog post. I found the fact that she was so analytical about her shortcomings very refreshing and I think there’s a lot to be learned from her experience.

As you probably know, in addition to writing courses we also do a Proofreading and Copy Editing Course. People often think that a proofreading course is mainly for those who want to set up in business using these skills, but we find that’s far from the only reason why students enrol with us.  Many of them are already studying one of our creative writing courses and they decide that being able to proofread professionally will help them to ensure that work they send out to publishers and editors is error free. Read the rest of this entry »




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Fail To Plan, Plan To Fail

September 6th, 2019

When you make the scary decision to call yourself a writer, it is natural to glean as much as you can about writing, either through formal study, research or a combination of the two. Invariably, you will discover numerous ways to construct your story, how you’re supposed to plan and know exactly what the narrative will look like before you start writing. Then, there is the reality.

The Idea

Ideas manifest themselves in a variety of ways and can come from anywhere at any time. Personally, I am often blindsided by an idea when there is no immediate access to writing materials, like in the shower or whilst driving. When this happens I start ‘singing’ the idea out loud so I don’t forget it. The beginning of a new piece is an exciting stage, but it is rarely a fully formed idea. At this point you are likely to have a fragment or several fragments around a theme, a location, a piece of dialogue, a character, or a scene. Read the rest of this entry »




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