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Preparing Your Children’s Book

November 1st, 2019

I finished a twenty-module Comprehensive Writing Course with the Writers Bureau in August 2019. I started the course in 2015 and at times was stumped by challenges along the way and let months pass without completing a module. But I always returned and the assignments worked; they made me think, they made me research, they made me practise. Help was always at hand from a tutor when I needed it. The course took me through a process and made me a better writer. That’s what it’s for. The learning through twenty assignments brought me the hard-won skills and confidence to be a writer.

There’s another reason I spent four years finishing my course. I have written two novels during these four years. One of them, Eoghan and The Talking Animals, was released on Amazon in April 2018, and the second book in this series, Eoghan and The Treasure of Termonfeckin, is being launched now, in November 2019. These books, set in Ireland, tell the story of an eight-year-old boy who discovers one summer on his grandfather’s farm that he has a gift: he can talk with animals. This brings Eoghan endless joy, but also endless problems, and he spends most of the first book solving dramatic problems on the farm. Read the rest of this entry »

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Winner of the Student Competition

October 30th, 2019

For our latest student competition we asked people to write the title and opening for a crime novel. Our congratulations go to David Goodday for the winning entry. Enjoy!


I was at home when I received the call from Mario. He told me that he wasn’t going to make it home that night and asked me for a favour. Mario was my next door neighbour and quite often I would use his spare key to go round and feed his cat for him. So, I went round, let Read the rest of this entry »

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Don’t Skimp On Research

October 25th, 2019

First, thanks to Sim for last week’s post. I see so many poems come in to our competitions each year (and I enjoy reading them all) so I know good advice when I see it and I feel he’s hit the nail on the head. It’s not always wise to enter competitions with the biggest prizes – the entry fees are often high and you’re up against really serious competition. Your wallet and your self-esteem can be dented if you get knocked-back too often. There are lots of competitions out there, so be selective about those you enter, think carefully about their requirements and consider the judges.  In other words, do your research properly and then make sure you stick to the rules and never, ever send a poem that you’re not 100% committed to. Read the rest of this entry »

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Success With Poetry Competitions

October 18th, 2019

Let me be clear from the outset, whether or not you win a prize in a poetry competition is entirely down to you and your creative acumen. However, there are definitely ways to increase your chances of success. Picture that moment when you are staring at a list of poetry competitions with generous cash prizes and affordable entry fees, deciding which to enter. It is so tempting to dust off a decent poem (usually no more than 40 lines for maximum opportunity) and then send it in to a zillion competitions, scarcely noticing how much you are spending on your dream. This approach generally results in a tumbleweed return and financial misery! It is even more frustrating when you read the winning entries and conclude that your poem was far superior and must have been overlooked somehow. Sadly, this is unlikely to be true. Read the rest of this entry »

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Libraries Week

October 11th, 2019

This week (7th to 12th October) is Libraries Week and the theme this year is Celebrating Libraries in a Digital World. I think that anything that raises the profile of libraries, supports their work and brings the public’s attention to them is great. When I go into my own library it’s great to see the computer access they provide to people that might otherwise struggle to apply for jobs and benefits and the kind advice that staff often offer. Also, I really value the fact that I can borrow books from the library direct to my Kindle if I don’t have time to pop in, or I run out of reading matter in the middle of the night.

On their site they say: Libraries Week 2019 will celebrate and explore how libraries are engaging communities through technology, building digital skills and confidence, encouraging digital participation and inclusion, supporting health, wellbeing and education and supporting local business and enterprise. Read the rest of this entry »

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About The Author: Diana Nadin

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