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Life Giving You Lemons? Make Lemonade!

May 10th, 2019

Writing rewards always bring a smile, whether it’s a great book review, a story or article acceptance, being placed in a competition, or simply someone saying nice things about something you’ve written. We all crave the positives to offset the many negatives we encounter on our journey to publication.

We strive for success and rightly celebrate it when it arrives, but what about those times when it feels as if the mountain is simply too hard to climb? How do we cope with the feeling that no matter what we do, we are never going to achieve our goals? The answer, of course, is to keep writing and keep submitting.

I’ve probably had more ‘thanks, but no thanks’ than I care to count, or want to remember. But rejections are simply part of a writer’s life. What has been even worse than that for me is to achieve my dreams and then have them taken away. That has happened to me on three separate occasions and this post is intended to show how I got back up, dusted myself off, and (like Robert the Bruce’s determined spider) tried, tried again – and succeeded again! Read the rest of this entry »

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Winner of the Student Only Book Review Competition

March 6th, 2019

Twice a year we run a competition just for WB students. It’s free to enter and there is a small prize of £25 for the winner.

Our most recent competition was to write a book review in 200 words. We had lots of fantastic entries which gave everyone at WB HQ a chance to add to their reading lists. A big thank you to those who entered. Read the rest of this entry »

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Finding Yourself A Publisher

December 11th, 2018

In my blog last week I mentioned using your local library to see what’s going on in the magazine world and do your research into what editors want. But I’ve also recently downloaded the BorrowBox app that allows me to borrow e-books from the library. It’s great for when you don’t want to trek across town in the rain with a big bag of books. It also means I can download books to my Kindle Fire that I might otherwise have to buy from Amazon. So it really is a win-win situation and if you don’t already have access to your library’s online catalogue it’s worth looking into. You have 14 days before the book disappears – but you do have the option to renew.

Let’s now look at things from the other side – not the book-reading public, but you as an author. If you’ve tried unsuccessfully to interest one of the commercial publishers or an agent in your work but you don’t have the confidence (or preference) to self-publish then one of the growing number of small, independent publishers might be what you’re looking for. Read the rest of this entry »

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Where Does All The Time Go?

November 2nd, 2018

Last week I promised that I’d try to give you some sound advice for ensuring that you actually find time to write. I know that many of you lead busy lives, but others use ‘lack of time’ as an excuse for not settling down and getting creative. So whichever category you fall into, read on….

Do you have days when all you seem to do is run around frantically and then collapse at the end of it all, wondering what you have achieved? There’s an important lesson to understand here:

Being busy doesn’t mean being productive.

Time management strategies are all about getting more done in less time. It’s about being more efficient with your time. In some ways, referring to these strategies as ‘Time Management’ strategies is a little misleading. We can’t manage time, but what we can do is manage ourselves better. Read the rest of this entry »

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NaNoWriMo Comes Round Again!

October 26th, 2018

First, thanks to Aileen for last week’s blog. I can’t imagine how difficult life would be if you struggled to read instructions, had difficulty filling in forms and didn’t have the amazing pleasure of sitting down to read a good book. So, I take my hat off to all the people who help those with literacy problems. And it’s lovely to hear of someone using their own writing to make this happen.

Every year, towards the end of October, I give a mention to NaNoWriMo the scheme by which would-be novelists are encouraged to write a complete novel in the month of November.  How time flies – it really seems to have come round quickly this year! I don’t think this is an easy challenge – and one not to be undertaken lightly. I suspect that you already need to have a pretty well-formed idea of your book’s plot before starting and you will definitely need the help of friends and family if you are to find enough time to get everything down in the month. One thing that makes it a little less daunting is that your novel doesn’t have to be perfect by the 30th November. It can be the first rough draft and then you can spend all the time you like polishing it to perfection. If you sign up at the official website you will get tips on how best to go about it and encouragement from like-minded people around the world – but it’s still up to you to make it happen. Read the rest of this entry »

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About The Author: Diana Nadin

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Institute of Training and Occupational Learning

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