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Final Call For Limericks

July 27th, 2018

Thanks to Colin for last week’s blog. I’ve always loved the film ‘True Grit’ – particularly the old one with John Wayne. I think the post might even tempt me to go ahead and read the book now!

So that it doesn’t get overlooked, I’ll mention right at the start that our Limerick Competition will be closing on 31st July, so you’ve only a few days left to enter. The winner will receive £100 and a Writers Bureau course of their choice. Two runners up will each receive £50 and a year’s subscription to The Association of Freelance Writers. Read the rest of this entry »




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Something For The School Holidays

July 13th, 2018

First, thanks to Andrew for last week’s blog – it made me smile. I’m not an avid fan of The Big Painting Challenge but I remember sitting watching the episode where they were asked to  paint boats and actually willing them to stop adding ‘improvements’ to their work.  So, I agree with his comments in the post wholeheartedly. It’s essential to give yourself enough time to edit your writing thoroughly before sending it out but it’s also essential to know when enough’s enough!

With the long school holidays about to start I thought that this week I’d provide some suggestions that might be interesting for those of you who have kids that enjoy writing . The first of these, if you live in the Midlands, is the Spark Young Writers Summer School running from July 30th to August 3rd at Wolverhampton University. Read the rest of this entry »




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Finding New Ideas

June 29th, 2018

First, thanks to Michela for last week’s blog. I love the way she refers to writing as ‘self-inflicted duty’! It may be for her, but there are many others who want to write but somehow find themselves short of new ideas.

First and foremost, you need to realise that nothing is really new. We’re pretty sure that no matter what idea you come up with, someone else will have already thought of it, or something very much like it. That’s just life. So, it’s not always about finding new ideas, it’s about making an old one fresh – finding a new angle to work from. Read the rest of this entry »




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First, Second Or Third Person?

June 1st, 2018

We give plenty of good advice in the Writers Bureau Comprehensive Course about how to decide whether to write your novel/short story in the first person or the third person.  For the uninitiated, here’s a quick reminder.

First Person:  I did this/I did that.

Third Person: Jack did this/Jack did that.

The main difference between them is that in the first-person you’ll only be able to identify with one person – the narrator – and the various scenes will be perceived through that character’s eyes. The other characters will be described by whoever is telling the tale. But – and this is a big but – the reader will only find out what the narrator knows, so your story will, in a sense, be limited in its action. But done well it can lead to great fiction – think of Jane Eyre! Read the rest of this entry »




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What’s YOUR Motivation?

May 18th, 2018

First, thanks to Vicki for last week’s post. I think she’s right when she says that nearly everyone who has had a burning desire to write probably remembers the motivation that first prompted them to pursue their dream.

But for some people, it’s maintaining that motivation when things don’t seem to be going right that’s a problem. Your cherished novel has been rejected…and rejected…and rejected. That fascinating article about your trip to the saffron fields of Morocco just doesn’t seem to be catching the eye of a travel editor. Your carefully crafted short story hasn’t been short-listed in yet another competition.  At some point, any writer can start to feel that perhaps they just haven’t got what it takes. Read the rest of this entry »




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