Wednesday, 15 January 2020


Today's Wednesday word of the week comes from the wonderfully talented** Gary Davies*, of Maritime Photgraphic. He described this ferry as looking refulgent in her new livery.

Refulgent means 'shining brightly' or 'gloriously bright'. Do you think it's apt in this case?

*My husband.

**No, I'm not after anything ... this time!

Wednesday, 8 January 2020

How's it going so far?

Has 2020 got off to a good start for your writing? Personally I'm quite pleased – I've had a couple of articles and a short story published, I've written and submitted a few pieces of fiction and entered one of the free competitions I blogged about recently. (And I learned that someone who entered another competition after seeing it here was highly commended.)

I've not entered this short story competition yet, but I plan to. It's free to enter, any theme and genre will be considered and there's a $1,000 prize.

I hope the year is going equally well for you, but don't feel insecure if you're yet to get many words down or receive that first piece of good news – there's plenty of time for that. Please don't get demoralised if at any time throughout the year you find yourself struggling to write as much as you'd hoped, or if
you're not getting the results you want. But if you do have any worries, remember the Insecure Writer's Support Group is there to help.

If you'd find it useful to have daily prompts and exercises to get you started, then A Year Of Ideas might be just the thing to kick start your writing. I've already heard from several people who've used it to create new pieces of writing.

Saturday, 4 January 2020

It's begun ...

The year has got off to a good start – I have two articles in the current (February!) issue of Writing Magazine. 

Obviously I'm happy about that, but I'm also rather chuffed that I'm considered one of the 'publishing experts' referred to on the cover.

Right, that's enough bragging for now – I'd better get back to work! How about you, are you writing, or still in holiday mode?

Tuesday, 31 December 2019

Happy New Year!

Wishing you much happiness and lots of wonderful writing in 2020.

I'm hoping next year will carry on as this one is ending – I've just had a story accepted (for The Weekly News) and now we're going away in the van.

Saturday, 28 December 2019

Post Christmas Sale!

Are Boxing Day and New Year sales still a thing? I remember seeing news reports of people queuing up for hours, sometimes even camping out overnight, in order to get incredible bargains. Does it still happen? Have you ever done it?

As far as I can recall, I've never had any kind of involvement in a post Christmas sale ... until now! From Story Idea to Reader is half price this week.

Here's the blurb ...

An easily accessible guide to writing fiction.

Whether brushing up your writing skills or starting out, this book will take you through the whole process from inspiration to conclusion.

Are you looking to submit your work for publication, enter a competition, or do you want to self-publish? This practical guide will help you every step of the way.

Between them, Patsy Collins and Rosemary Kind have sold hundreds of short stories, written sixteen published books and produced numerous articles for Writing Magazine and similar publications. They've both judged writing competitions and run workshops, and Rosemary has read and edited thousands of short stories and published dozens of books for other writers.

With the information, help and encouragement in this book, you too could see your work in print.

Buy it now and give your writing life a boost.

Wednesday, 25 December 2019

Festive fun

Whether you celebrate Christmas, something else, or nothing at all, I hope you enjoy yourself between now and my next blog post.

As you're here, how about joining in a word association game? 

Just read the word in the last comment and type the first word which comes to mind. I'll start it off with – Christmas.

Tuesday, 24 December 2019

And finally ...

Thanks to Alyson Hilbourne for sending me the link to this competition to win a writing retreat. All you have to do is tweet about the book you'd like to write – although if you win, I think they'll be expecting you to make some progress! It's a great prize, but as I have my own mobile writing retreat I probably won't enter.

This is the last of my daily posts featuring free to enter writing competitions. I'll be back with more free competitions in 2020 (although not every single day!) I can do you a writing prompt, short exercise and story/scene suggestion every day for twelve months, iA Year Of Ideas would be any help.

Merry Christmas!

Monday, 23 December 2019

It's true I tell you

The Spread the Word life writing competition is free to enter and offers a prize package including mentoring, an Arvon course, £1,500 and membership of the Royal Society of Literature. You have up to 5,000 words to write something intended to be true.

I could tell them about the time I flew with the Red Arrows, or when I performed in the Albert Hall, or swam the channel, or abseiled down the white cliffs of Dover ... Oh, true ... In that case, I can only use one of those examples.

Congratulations to Alyson who has won the e-copy of From Story Idea to Reader – an accessible guide to writing fiction. Please contact me or co-author Rosemary J. Kind to claim your prize.

Sunday, 22 December 2019

Happy Winter Solstice!

It's the winter solstice today (in the Northern Hemisphere) and from now on until midsummer the days will gradually get longer and brighter. The winter solstice has long been celebrated by those whose lives are dictated by the seasons and who feel a connection to nature. It's associated with rebirth and fresh chances.

The University of Southampton offer a wide range of free to enter writing competitions with a green theme. The current ones (scroll down to find them) include those for scriptwriting, flash fiction and a novel. Prizes average £500.

I'd planned to provide a daily free to enter writing competition from 8th December up until today – but you know what plans are ... I'm keeping going until Christmas Eve.