Sunday, 30 December 2018

2018 / 2019

It's the time of year when we traditionally look back on the last twelve months and make plans for the next. I'm a traditional girl so ...

In 2018 Womag writing was a bit up and down. A big blow came when the owners of Woman's Weekly demanded all rights for any new stories. I consider this incredibly unfair. Other magazines have contracts allowing the publishers to use stories as often as they like and in any format, for no extra fee – yet still allow the authors to retain moral rights and reuse the stories themselves. I won't give up all rights to my work, so have lost my biggest market. The entire issue severely knocked my enthusiasm and for some time I didn't write anything.

There was good news though. I had my first ever publication in The People's Friend (then a couple more – and more will follow). I also made my first sale to In The Moment magazine. Thanks to a large backlist I actually sold more stories than I wrote this year!

More good news came in the form of several competition wins and placings – all of them from free to enter competitions I'd featured on this blog. My prizes included a book token, publication, certificates, signed books and cash.

I made very little progress on my novels, but I have put together several short story collections, including collaborating on this free one.

As well as writing I've been encouraging others to have a go, through my blogs, a Facebook group and writing workshops. I've also been trying to encourage people to read my books, by giving talks to a book club and at my local library. I'm delighted to have books stocked in several libraries as well as The Bookshop at Lee-on-the-Solent.

Most importantly I got to meet some lovely people; readers and writers who've been friends for years and those I'm just getting to know.

For 2019 I've already agreed to take part in a panel event as part of Portsmouth Bookfest and to tutor at the Hope Cove Writers' Workshop Weekend. Hopefully I'll be taking part in other events for readers and writers and meeting more interesting people. Perhaps the campervan will take me to you? I'll post details of any events on my website.

I'll still write and submit womag stories, but it won't form such a large part of my writing life – simply because the market is now too small to keep me fully occupied. I'll be entering more competitions, and of course will share the details here. There will be more books – and yes, I'll mention those too!


How about you? How was your writing year – and what plans do you have for 2019?

10 comments:

Frances Garrood said...

Well done for keeping going during what has been a very difficult year for womag writers, Patsy, and for breaking into People’s Friend. Where do writers starting out go now, never mind those who rely on the womags for a living? So many of us owe a big debt to the magazines and the lovey editors, many of whom have now gone. Good luck with your plans for next year, Patsy, and if your van ever takes you down to Wiltshire, I’d love meet up with you. There might even be 🍰 !

Carolb said...

Despite the unwelcome magazine changes you've done quite a lot of interesting things. All the best for 2019 and your existing plans. :-)

Author R. Mac Wheeler said...



counting down those seconds to 2019

liz young said...

Well done on those competition wins, and all the best for 2019 x

L said...

Another successful year for you including living life to the full in your campervan. Here's to a happy and healthy 2019.

Bea Charles said...

Well done on your achievements in 2018, and thank you again for all you do to encourage other writers - including sharing news of the free competitions. I plan to enter a few more of these next year.
Happy New Year to you, and maybe, just maybe, we will finally meet for that long overdue coffee and cake.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Patsy - that's such a sad thing to happen ... but you seem to be helping yourself, while you're helping others ... writing our memoirs is so important for us all. Good luck you'll find way through and carry on being published ... and I know you'll keep writing your stories. Enjoy travelling in your writing studio ... and have a lovely year - cheers Hilary

Rosemary Gemmell said...

Great post, Patsy, and a good summing up of what's happening in the womag world. All the best for your writing, plans and travel in 2019.

Kate Blackadder said...

Thank you for all you do for womag writers, Patsy. Well done on the competition wins – a timely reminder that there are other outlets for short stories. All the best.

Gina Gao said...

Hope you have a great New Year!

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