Thursday, 28 May 2020

Hot and happy

How are you? We're both fine here. I'm weirdly short of time though, considering we can't go anywhere in the van. The garden is looking great though, my chilli peppers are coming on a treat and the latest novel is now at 82,000 words.

Hmmm, maybe that lack of time isn't so weird after all? I know losing track of days isn't, and you'll forgive me for once again not getting round to posting until Thursday.

Here's a little competition passed on to me by Alyson Hilbourne. They're looking for very short stories, flash fiction and poetry. There's also a competition for under 16s. A £25 prize is offered in each category and all winners and runners up will be included in an anthology. 

This competition is for a thrilling, suspenseful or frightening novel of a minimum of 7,500 words. You may send works in progress which is just as well because there's only a couple of days left to enter. There's a prize of $500 plus some publicity stuff.

Do you think that's enough chillies?

Thursday, 21 May 2020

Are you writing about C 19?

Thanks to Fiona for passing on this link to a call for submissions. Stella Quines want letters relating to the 'precarious and pertinent moment in history we are living in, together, globally'.  

Themes are provided and you're allowed up to 400 words. 'Each chosen letter will be performed by a professional actor, directed by Shilpa T-Hyland, Caitlin Skinner or Amy Liptrott, and filmed. 

The films will be shared online across Stellar Quines’ website and social media on June 8 2020.'

Are you writing about the Covid 19 virus? Or are you otherwise writing something different from usual?

Personally I've (temporarily) stopped writing short stories and am concentrating on another novel. 

The word count is going up steadily, but I have a long way still to go. That's OK though as I'm enjoying it.

I've also been doing things to bring colour into my life. Mainly gardening, but I also had a go at flower arranging and brightening up my lockdown hair. 

What have you been doing to occupy yourself when you've not been able to get out and about as usual?

Wednesday, 13 May 2020

Competition news

I'd love to hear your competition news. Have you entered any comps? Had any luck? Heard about interesting contests? Got any tips to pass on? (Although I only feature free to enter competitions in my posts it's fine to share news about other competitions too.)

For those who are unsure, this post explains how to leave a comment. (If you've subscribed to the blog by email and wish to respond, you'll need to click on the link and add a comment – it's not possible to do this by replying to the email.)

Sunday, 10 May 2020

Bargain book.

Keep It In The Family, my collection of 25 'related' short stories is currently reduced to 99p / 99c.

Alec thinks he's suffered a medical emergency, Dr Kuttemopen says the same about his patient, and Jake and his granddad will be at risk from one if they carry on as they've been doing. With the support of loved ones, they could all put these predicted and suspected health problems behind them. Uncle Boris's condition will never go away, but neither will Aunt Jonna, so he'll not just cope, but enjoy doing so.

Everyone has problems or concerns from time to time. Some deal with them by always moving on and never looking back, others by asking the right question. They might try to keep them hidden, insist on bringing them into the open, or allow the sea to wash them away. Most will turn to their families for help, but all Miss Frencham's are gone. All she can do, is tell people about the bodies.

Anne's spent a lot of time waiting for her daughter; a whole lifetime, but it's been worth every second. Daniel's mother and Dizzy's father-in-law won't wait a moment for them, until they come to their senses and reunite their families. Stephanie's waiting for the right kind of snow, and Adam's waiting for the wrong sort of Santa. Their reward will be to know they did the right thing.

Families, whether we're born or married into them, or choose them for ourselves all have stories to tell. This collection contains 25 of them.

Wednesday, 6 May 2020

IWSG and free writing competitions.

I'm not sure whether I feel 'May already?" or 'Is it only May?' to be most appropriate. Time seems a bit fluid at the moment.

Somehow though I've got used to the unsettled feeling and am back writing again. Maybe selling some of my short stories to magazines helped? Perhaps it wasn't that, as it's a novel which I've been working on. I've got it fron 28,000 jumbled words to a plotted out first draft of more than twice that.

I've entered some writing compeitions too. I'm tempted to have a go at this one. It's for a blurb for a hypothetical novel, but I thought I might use my novel in progress. Even if I don't win the $500 prize, I'd have a blurb for the book, which might be useful.

This competition has a prize of publication with a $10,000 advance against royalties, but I'm not sure my combination of romance and murder mystery can be considered literary fiction, so I'll give it a miss. The photos are of locations used in my WIP.

If you consider yourself working class, then you could try this competition with a £200 prize. I'm not sure I put enough effort into my writing to qualify!

If you're going to enter any of these competitions, but want a little help to get going then perhaps this book will be useful, or maybe you'll perform some kind of ritual first?

This month's Insecure Writer's SupoortGroup question is – Do you have any rituals that you use when you need help getting into the ZONE? Care to share?

Personally I make a cup of tea. Is that a ritual? I know it can be, as with Chinese tea ceremonies, but I just dunk a bag in a cup and slosh in some milk. Often there's cake too, but although I've never been tempted to test the theory, I suspect cake may not be essentail to writing.