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Ave Atque Vale

April 18th, 2014

First, thanks to Sue for last week’s blog. It just goes to show that success breeds success – once you’ve had one book published it’s much easier to get subsequent ones accepted.

I often include information about various competitions in this blog but they are usually for poems or short stories.  Article-writing competitions seem to be few and far between.  Yet producing articles is one of the best places to start your writing career as there are so many markets and such an on-going thirst for content. So I thought I’d remedy the situation by including a couple.

The Daily Telegraph run a weekly competition where they are looking for original and entertaining travel articles.  The prize is £200 and your article could go on to be voted ‘best of the year’ and receive a further £1000.  Full details for submission are on their website.

Next, as part of the Winchester Writers’ Festival (20th to 22 June) they are holding 12 competitions.  One of these is for a feature article, which must be on the theme of ‘Never give up! Never surrender! How to keep writing in the face of rejection.’  I’m sure many of you will find that appropriate!  You don’t need to attend the conference to enter and full details of this, and the other 11 competitions, are available on their website.

Next, some good news and some bad.  The bad news is that Shelley, who writes the Monday and Wednesday blog posts, is leaving us today. She’s been with the Writers Bureau for the past 10 years and during that time she has worked in our Student Advisory department and then moved on to develop her writing skills by producing blog posts and SEO copy for us.  The good news is that she’s got a great new job, with a larger company, where she’ll be able to widen the scope of her writing.  We’re sorry to lose her, but we feel it’s the right step for her and we wish her all the very best.

So if any of you would-be writers are asked to use your creativity as part of your current job – jump at the chance.  It might not seem exciting at the time, but it might be just the thing for building up your portfolio and moving your skills to another level.

Next week my guest is Writers Bureau tutor, Simon Whaley.  He’s not only a great writer, but also a pretty impressive photographer (don’t blush, Simon) and he’ll be showing you how offering pictures with your writing can really boost your fee.

In the meantime, have a great Easter and don’t eat too much chocolate.  Or if you do, stick to dark chocolate.  It’s good for the heart, good for the brain and full of antioxidants.  Well, that’s what I’ll be telling myself as I tuck in on Easter Sunday.

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