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Block-v-Indented Paragraphs

May 11th, 2021

There are two paragraphing styles that you need to be aware of – block and indented – and many new writers wonder about which they should use.

Block paragraphing has a blank line separating the last line of the previous paragraph and the first line of the new paragraph. Each paragraph is a block of text on the page, with white space all around it. The first line of each paragraph is left-justified which means it is not indented. This blog uses block paragraphs!

Indented paragraphing does not have a blank line between each paragraph. Instead, you start the first line of each paragraph about five or six spaces from the left hand margin of your page.  Read the rest of this entry »




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Do You Need a Pseudonym?

April 23rd, 2021

First, thanks to Simon for last week’s post. I’ve known him for a long time and if anyone can provide good tips on how to be more positively productive as a writer, it’s him!

Now for some sad news; Jimmy Hodge who tutored for us for many years died towards the end of March aged 88. Jimmy was a brilliant tutor, journalist and author – but he was also a real character. He was part of a Western re-enactment society and when his group visited Rochester, Indiana in the late 70s he was made an honorary Deputy Sheriff. He later used this in his road safety work with Kent schoolchildren – just one of the many things he did as part of his charitable work. Our condolences go to all his family – he will be sadly missed. Read the rest of this entry »




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From Stand Up to Sonnets

December 4th, 2020

First, thanks for Amanda for last week’s post. I don’t know how I would have managed without the library BorrowBox App during lockdown when our local libraries were closed. Now I intend to look into lots more of the suggestions that she packed in. I also found it so inspiring that even when she was up against serious health problems she still found time to write!

This week is going to be something of a miscellany – but hopefully an interesting one!

First, have a look at Write Life’s 100 Best Websites for Writers in 2020 (I know we’re nearly in 2021, but it’s still good). There are 10 categories which include Freelancing, Blogging, Travel, Publishing, Podcast etc. To ensure that the content is genuinely good they only include sites that have been recommended by readers of The Write Life; the published content is judged to be helpful to writers and the list is updated recently and regularly. I hope you find it useful. Read the rest of this entry »




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Is Working From Home A Good Or Bad Idea?

September 25th, 2020

COVID19 has meant many are required to work from home instead of their normal workplace. Has it been a good or bad experience for you?

Many writers work from home, of course, so here’s my list of critical things I found when first setting up my home office over 20 years ago.

 

Make a Timetable with realistic times to start your working day, when to have a break, when to go to the shops. It may not always work out, but it helps you focus on the bits you must do each day.

Let others know you are “working” from home. Friends and family are still likely to pop in for a chat, phone to say “Hi”, expect you to make them a cuppa and sit with them. You are not available because you are at home, so they need to know your timetable. No distractions. Avoid phoning you at critical times of the day. Read the rest of this entry »




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The Ten Commandments For Writing Divine Short Stories

July 31st, 2020

I’ve been wanting  to play God ever since I watched Bruce Almighty. I’m delighted to say the day has finally come. So, here is my Decalogue to write divine short stories.

1) You shall write

I can hear you shriek “really, Mr. God?” Although being obvious, it can be challenging. Write daily if possible, even just a couple of lines.

2) You shall read

Explore different authors and various genres. Learn from the masters. Above all (to me, at least): Ray Bradbury, The Illustrated Man; Stephen King, Everything’s Eventual. Read the rest of this entry »




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