People like you never get published? A major literay agency is trying to do something about it…

Thank you very much for this information, Bridget Whelan

BRIDGET WHELAN writer

building abstractLiterary agency David Higham Associates is to host an open day for writers who don’t have an an agent and come from underrepresented backgrounds – that includes LGBTQ+ writers, BAME, those from working-class backgrounds and from ethnic, cultural and religious minorities, along with people with disabilities. It doesn’t actually say so on the press release, but I think the definition also embraces older writers.

The day will offer 10 writers the opportunity to meet with industry experts and to receive tailored feedback on their work.

Intended to be a bi-annual event, the inaugural DHA Open Day will take place on Thursday 13th December 2018 at the agency’s offices in Soho and will focus on fiction-writing for adults. It will also feature talks and Q&As with agents and publishers, one-to-one sessions to provide tailored feedback on current writing projects and a drinks reception.

DHA’s second Open Day will take place in 2019 and will focus…

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Author Spotlight Ari Meghlen

Welcome!

1. When did you start writing?

Firstly, thank you so much for having me on your blog.

I’ve been writing since I was given unsupervised access to pens. 🙂 I believe it was around the age of 8 years old. I loved making up stories and a teacher gave us an assignment to describe a friendly monster under the bed. I wrote not only a description but a story about him. And I haven’t stopped writing since 🙂

2. What motivates you to write?

I don’t really need motivation to write. It’s just what I was born to do. I am forever caught by scenes, character or plots that just fill my head until I need to get them down. It’s like writing relieves pressure in my mind and gives space to all the new ideas slipping in.

3. What genre do you write in and what made you chose this particular genre?

I write Preternatural Urban Fantasy, more traditional Fantasy though I’ve also written sci-fi and some crime as well as Police Procedural stories. I have always been drawn to fantasy and sci-fi. It’s what I love to read and watch as movies. But I never like being tied to just one genre. Mainly because the ideas I get stretch over multiple genres.

4. What is your goal in writing? Do you have dreams where your writing should take you?

My dream is to write full-time. I don’t care for great success or wealth (the latter would be nice if it happened). I just want to do what I love full-time.

I would love to see my work published, but I have no interest in rushing that just to see something I wrote in print. I have a specific level I want to get my writing to before I publish.

I want someone to read my stories and escape within my worlds, to connect with my characters and the ultimate… would be for someone to love my characters the way I love my favourite author’s characters.

5. Do you ever suffer from writer’s block and if yes, how do you deal with it?

I call it Creative Constipation and yes, I’ve suffered badly. I will often take a step back from writing as it can come on due to burn-out. I will watch movies in the same genre I am currently writing and when I’m ready to go back, I will do writing exercises.

This usually involves trawling the internet for random photos or pictures and then writing about them. It can be something as simple as just literally writing out exactly what I see in the photo, to describing a mood, coming up with what happens next etc. I think of it like greasing the wheels in my head.

6. What advice would you like to give new, hopeful authors?

Advice? Let’s see:

1 – Never refer to yourself as “aspiring”. If you write, you’re a writer. Own it.

2 – Writing is hard but that’s okay. It’s awesome and worth it, but don’t think it’s a cake-walk because it’s not.

3 – Never stop writing – there will be a lot of people who want to tear you down. This can even include friends and family. If you want to write, then let nothing stop you.

4 – Work at it. Writing gets better with practice. Don’t just write something fast and publish. There is already too much rough, unedited, barely-polished stuff out there. Take pride in your work and make it the best it can be. Better that it takes time and be great, than you rush and it be lacking.

5 – Learn to take criticism. It’s hard and we all hate it. But suck it up, Buttercup it’s part of the process. Learn to distinguish between good, solid critiquing and random, unhelpful criticism. Don’t lash out when someone offers feedback. Take a breath, step back and see what they say. They might just help your story grow. And remember, in the end, you’re the writer – you don’t have to use the feedback if you really don’t want to.

6 – Lastly, understand that if you want to be a writer and sell your work, that there is a business side to it. So, start early and learn about things like networking, marketing, branding etc. The more you learn the better position you will be in.

7. Please, tell us about your work.

My Preternatural Urban Fantasy is in it’s 2nd draft and with my Alpha Reader at the moment.

I am currently working on a new, more traditional fantasy set in a world called Ly’rium. The first book focuses mostly on Thea, one of the long-living Imorie. Having been kept hidden in her family estate for years, she is finally reaching the age where she can take control of her own life.

However, that freedom is suddenly snatched away when she marked as a Potential. Now Thea is forced to fulfil a gruelling, mentally and physically-challenging trial to test her inner power. If she passes, she will become one of the Blessed. If not, her mind will broken in the maelstrom leaving her a shell of herself.

Thank you for being my guest. It was such a pleasure to have you here!!


Connect with Ari:

Website – https://arimeghlen.co.uk/
Facebook Author Page – https://www.facebook.com/writerarimeghlen/
Twitter – https://twitter.com/AriMeghlen
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/ari_meghlen/

Because I fell in love with you again (National Poetry Month)

A heartfelt, touching, sensitive and fascinating poem by F. E. Feeley jr.

F.E.Feeley Jr

lubov-birina-579146-unsplash

unsplash-logoLubov’ Birina

Because you came to me
in the night
knocking on my door
gentle raps, barely taps
but enough to send me to the door,
wrapping myself in a robe as I went

There you stood
windswept hair, leather jacket, and doe eyes
smelling of Burberry cologne and nervousness
while the thunder rolled in the pitch dark
and lightning flashed
because the mother nature was conspiring

I’d missed you for weeks, it seemed
Maybe it was a lifetime or two
the warmth of your voice
the way my name tumbled from your lips

I thought you’d never come back
and because of the wind I shivered
and retreated back through my doorway
before you stepped inside

before I could speak
you wrapped your arms around me
I wanted to cry, I wanted to laugh
because I missed you – I wanted to freeze time

My hands reached up…

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A Productive Writer’s Night

Picture courtesy of: http://www.poesiagt.com/2013/01/tipos-de-versos.html

I would say, the majority of us writer’s cannot financially afford to lean back and spend their life writing, no matter how much we dream of becoming full-time writers. And believe me, I’m one of these dreamers, I know what I’m talking about.

I’m happiest when I write. I’m relaxed and in a good mood, smiling, sometimes chatty, and I felt alive and focused on my task when I see my pen gliding across the paper and build a fantasy world, with fantasy characters and fantasy creatures… you get the point.

I have read so many articles about the power of wishful thinking, the power of positive thinking, informing the reader that only someone who strongly believes in her/his talent, is going to be successful at the end. And to believe in ourselves means to not only “hope” to one day become a full-time author, but know that we will become a full-time author. And that’s why we should resign from our job and become a writer who spends his/her time writing.

I try to be a positive person and believe in myself – I dream of being a full-time writer, but I also have to be realistic. My wishful positive thinking won’t pay my bills.

To permit myself to write, to travel, to meet new people and ‘old’ friends, to see my family and to write, yes… to pay my editor, my copyright lawyer, my cover designer, I need to make money. And that’s why I have a fulltime job.

My job is demanding, as is any other writer’s job. Some days we work many more hours than the ones we should because the workload is enormous. So, when do I write?

I am a night owl. Very often I’m most productive between 11 pm and the early morning hours. Of course, I cannot use the entire night to write and then go to work with nearly no sleep. I need to be able to concentrate during the day.

When I come home, I permit myself a break to calm down, get my work out of my head, wash the day off in a shower, eat, feed the kitties and relax. After that, I get up, turn my computer on and go to work. Depending on how tired I am I might decide to type my draft into the computer or continue to draft the new story that’s in my head, waiting to be written.

I work for about four or five hours (which doesn’t mean I have never extended that time frame). Then I go to bed and get some sleep. Three days of the five I work I sleep for about 5 to 6 hours before getting up and driving to my job. Two days a week I sleep an hour longer. The weekends I catch up on sleep before continuing to write either book or blog posts, for example.

From what I found out, many writers are night owls; I’m not the only one. Danielle Steele and Honoré de Balzac wrote in night shifts as well, only to name two famous writers.

I think the time doesn’t matter. An author writes when he/she is most creative. Currently, my workload only permits me to write nights and weekends, but I got a vacation too, and often then I’m more creative than during the entire work year. My biggest writing progress usually takes part on vacation. Also, I guess, it depends on the writer’s preference and creativity. Some people are larks; some are owls. I am the owl.

And then there are the times when I’m unhappy. During a spiritual low like this, I’m mostly unable to write anything useful and keep on typing in what I drafted before.

Right now, writing this blog post, it is 1 am. And yes, according to my plan I should have gone to bed more than one hour ago. But I couldn’t resist finishing the post before permitting myself to go to bed.

I figure there are as many writing routines as there are writers. And this happens to be mine.

Would you like to share your writing routine with us in the comments below? Thank you!

Beating the Blank Page – Guest Post by, Traci Kenworth…

What a great and encouraging guest post, written by Traci Kenworth. I found it on TSRA’s blog and I’m convinced the right thing to do is sharing.

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

Copyright: ragnarocks 123RF Stock Photo

One of my biggest plights as a writer is beating the blank page. It’s always a deterrent when I start a new manuscript. It takes a few minutes to linger, sometimes days before I get anything down. Once I have something set up, the words start to flow, but it’s getting past that white space that weighs on me. It doesn’t even have to be the start of the manuscript really. I have a hard time beginning a new chapter. How I get past it, is trying new things. A new title, in case that gets the words going. A new angle to come into the story or article at, believe me, it helps.

Most of the time, it’s not that I don’t know what to say, it’s just getting it phrased right, framing how that chapter’s going to go. I do outlines to frame…

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Author Spotlight Peter Castrillo

Welcome! Please introduce yourself.

Peter Costello, AKA, Peter Castrillo

1. When did you start writing? I liked to write as a child, no matter what it concerned,

for fun, school, or work. I started writing my story when I retired at age 65. But, had it in my head to do for fifty years. The actual writing took about two years, and I used Friesen Press for my Publisher.

2. What motivates you to write?

I have always had an opinion on most social political ideas, policy topics, and would write for my own understanding of subject, graduating in Political Science.

3. What genre do you write in and what made you chose this particular genre?

I wrote this story In True Crime and Memoirs, because that is the area the story falls within.

4. What is your goal in writing?

My goal is to tell a good story that the reader enjoys. Make the reader not be able to put the book down because they want to see what happens with either the characters, or the plot. I like to write relevant dialogue, that releases emotional feelings. But, my very main goal is to entertain myself with a passionate hobby.
Do you have dreams where your writing should take you? Yes, dreams are everything to a writer, thinker, or ordinary person. Then, you organize those dreams into a plan of action.

 

5. Do you ever suffer from writer’s block and if yes, how do you deal with it?

Yes, I’ve had writer’s block, and stop writing for a while, I need the inspiration and passion to want to write.

6. What advice would you like to give new, hopeful authors?

Sit and write it for yourself. Paint the picture you see and feel, and hope others read and feel it the way you intended.

7. Please, tell us about your work.

Vegas Vendetta is a story about my years from 18 to 25, after growing up in a period at the end of World War II among the Italian immigrants who came through Ellis Island and practiced their lifestyle here in America. The state of the World and especially America after winning World War II was monumental to this 50’s generation. People were beyond proud, deservingly boastful, and confident in living life, knowing it was a new world coming, and it brought in the sixties drug, sex, rock and roll which were formative years for me. Las Vegas was built and controlled by gangsters, thugs, and killers, and that’s who I hustled for a living, and never considered myself one of them. I thought of it as a ‘Huckleberry Finn 1960’ adventure.

Thank you for being my guest. It was such a pleasure to have you here!!


About Peter:

Author Bio

The author grew up in a very narrow time period of social change that was brought on when the war ended. The large influx of immigration that was happening at Ellis Island that allowed the criminal element to enter and flourish with the daily numbers games, parlays, horse racing, and other non-violent crimes was a boon to the economy. Everybody in my neighborhood gambled and betting was a sport that gave hope of winning cash. It was common and accepted to play games of chance, and it was sometimes a relative, neighbor, or trusted family friend who booked the bet for you. It didn’t matter that it was turned in to a fella who gave it to another fella, who drove it to Brooklyn to another fella. We trusted the source all the way up the line and felt they were family, after all they came from Calabria, Naples or Florence….

Website: https://pacostel3.wixsite.com/petercastrillo
FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/PeterCastrilloVegasVendetta/


Peter’s Book:

Book Description

IT’S THE 1960S. War is raging in Southeast Asia, and the draft board is looming over every young man’s shoulder, but recent high school graduate Peter Castrillo has a plan; enroll in college for as long as it takes to get a student deferment…and then head to Vegas! And Vegas is everything he dreamed it would be-parties at Sammy Davis’s place, hanging out at the bar with Elvis, and flirting with Mia Farrow in the elevators. It’s all bank-rolled lavishly by the clever cons that Peter and his pals devise, taking the casinos for a bundle in these low-tech security days. The drugs are plentiful, the girls are wild, and the glittery nights seem to go on forever. But when Peter makes the mistake of a romantic entanglement with the gorgeous trophy-wife of a venal Bulgarian mobster, his Vegas dream turns into a nightmare that he just might not survive. Based on true facts and dished out with equal portions of hilarity and horror, Vegas Vendetta tells one young man’s story of his quest to evade the draft, make money, meet women, and find excitement back in the days when Vegas truly was Sin City….

Buy it here

 

Weird Side Of Famous Writers – by Jack Milgram

 

How well do you know your favorite writers?

Have you checked out their biographies, or does your knowledge end at the list of books they’ve written?

Whatever the case may be, some writers have a side that very few people even know about. And it’s a pretty weird side. We’re talking about the strange habits and other quirks that some of the most famous writers have.

And we want to uncover some of them in our infographic. We’ve identified 20 famous authors who are known to have strange habits. This infographic clearly shows that sometimes it’s not only talent and outstanding work that can make people talk about writers.
Make sure to check out the infographic and you’ll surely learn something new about the listed authors you never knew before.

 

Author’s biography

I have been interested in writing since I made the acquaintance of pen and paper. My first letters were really funny, and my mom still keeps them as mementoes. However, as soon as I learned how to write words, I started forming them into sentences. And do you know what my first sentence said? “I love my words”. It was written so ineptly that it looked more like “I love my weird”. When I was younger and played in a band I also started writing poems, but to be honest, prose is much easier for me and I’m doing much better focusing on exactly that. I started writing, but often left unfinished, many of my essays at school, as well as my researches at college, where I studied psychology and education. I started freelance writing when I was a student. I have never found sitting in an office appealing, and a world traveler is actually my true alter-ego. That is why freelancing was my career solution. And now, here you are, reading my tips and guidance for my favorite occupation while I am actually doing what I love all over the world.

Contact Jack Milgram

Blog:  CW blog

Email: milgram.jack@yahoo.com

Twitter: @Jack__Milgram

Facebook: Jack.Milgram