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Writing As Therapy

April 1st, 2020

First, thanks to Mick for last week’s blog. I know everything seems so uncertain at the moment and I suspect that lots of us are feeling rather distracted and unable to concentrate on anything other than making sure we have a fully stocked freezer, and that those we  love are well and not in financial difficulty.

But if you can concentrate for a few hours every day, then this really is a perfect time to settle down and write. So, I’m not going to use this post as an excuse to witter on about Coronavirus or air my views about the government’s response to it. Instead, I’m going to suggest some outlets for your writing that you might want to consider.

As many of you who will be self-isolating are in the (dare I say it?) older age group, then I’ll start with some magazines that you may consider approaching with your articles and experiences. So here goes…

Saga magazine:  Much of the content is commissioned from professional freelances and experienced writers, so pitches are accepted. The editor is Louise Robinson (e: editorial@saga.co.uk)

The Oldie:  Freelance contributions are accepted but writers must be familiar with their style and content. They want to see  finished articles, not pitches (600-1300 words). The editor is Harry Mount (e: editorial@theoldie.co.uk).

People’s Friend:  They accept true-life  features on travel, people, history, nostalgia and nature, plus fillers on hobbies, memories, people, places and experiences. Again they want the finished work (by email) not pitches.

Yours:  They accept short inspirational features based on real-life experiences. Plus they like to have accompanying photos. Send to yours@bauermedia.co.uk

Note that these four publications are all very different in style and approach; so make sure you do proper research into what they publish (ie what their readers obviously like) before sending anything off to them.

Next, for those of you who write poetry, you might consider the Ver Poets’ Open Poetry Competition. Prizes are 1st – £600; 2nd – £300 and 3rd – £100 plus winners and other selected entries will appear in an anthology. Submissions can be up to 30 lines and the entry fee is £4 per poem (£10 for three poems). An entry form can be downloaded from their website and the closing  date is 30th April.

Finally, the 2020 Yeovil Literary Prize is accepting entries in four categories: Novel (they require a synopsis and the opening chapters of an unpublished novel); Short Story (short fiction up to 2000 words); Poetry (up to 40 lines); Writing Without Restriction (anything that doesn’t fit into the other categories!) There are different entry fees and prizes for each category so check out the website for full details.

That should give you plenty to be going on with. In the meantime, I’ve got my hands on Hilary Mantel’s The Mirror and the Light  which is proving to be every bit as enjoyable as the previous two books about Thomas Cromwell’s rise and fall. So, all that remains is to say – keep safe!

My guest next week is Laura Ansbro who will be looking at the difference between ‘writing’ and ‘copywriting’.

Author: Diana Nadin

 

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