Archives For Writing

Judging Your Own Work

4 September 2014 — 3 Comments

Judging Your Own Work - Brian McDonald

By award-winning writer and director Brian McDonald
Excerpted from Invisible Ink: A Practical Guide to Building Stories that Resonate

 

A writer is someone for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people.
– Thomas Mann

Don’t write for other writers. People are drawn to writing for different reasons and many people do it to seem smart. If you have a good first act, most will never recognize it, because they’re not really clear on what a first act does. They know nothing of construction, but will turn their noses up at the idea of it anyway. The less they know about it the more they will object to it.

The one thing I have noticed about people who are exceptional in their creative work is that they are always trying to get better. That’s how they got good in the first place. These people judge themselves against the best work. They aim for the top.

Just worry about the craft and the art will take care of itself.

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Wattpad for Authors

Online community Wattpad has a large and dedicated following around the world. In this guest post Rowena Wiseman explains how writers can use Wattpad to reach a whole new audience.

Wattpad is the world’s largest community of readers and writers with over 30 million people using the platform. I’ve heard that only 10% of these users are writers, making it 90% of readers looking for their next great read. This is where Wattpad is superior to other writing sites that I’ve used in the past where it’s just been writers reading and commenting on other writers’ work. Sure it’s great to connect with other writers, but Wattpad offers the unique experience of attracting masses of actual readers.

I started an account on Wattpad earlier this year and I now have followers from places as far as Mexico, Latvia, Vietnam, India and the Philippines. I’ve been lucky enough to have my short novella Bequest showcased on the homepage and as a featured story. Bequest is about a man that has been almost fully tattooed by a well-known artist and he wants to donate his skin to the National Gallery when he dies. This story attracted almost 30,000 chapter reads on Wattpad and is now being published as a short eBook by Tenebris Books.

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18 Countries 18 Publication Opportunities
A list of 18 literary magazines from around the world that accept international submissions.

Argentina
Digital publication The Buenos Aires Review publishes work by emerging and established writers from the Americas in both Spanish and English. All prose submissions – fiction and non-fiction – must be under 5000 words and poets are asked to send 3 to 6 poems at a time (up to 2000 words). The Buenos Aires Review also publishes cultural criticism and interviews.

Papua New Guinea
Stella describes itself as a thinking woman’s magazine from Papua New Guinea for the Pacific. The magazine covers fashion, health, travel, arts and lifestyle topics. Stella welcomes submissions of articles and creative-journalism from emerging and established writers from across the Pacific region.

Canada
The Malahat Review invites writers at all stages of their careers to submit their work. The magazine publishes poetry, short fiction, and creative nonfiction by writers from Canada and abroad as well as reviews of Canadian books. The Malahat Review runs four literary contests per year.

South Africa
Published four times a year, New Contrast is South Africa’s oldest literary journal. It accepts submissions of fiction up to 6000 words and poetry up to 75 lines. The journal welcomes writers from around the world, though preference is given to pieces which have some bearing on issues, events or reactions relevant to South African and in some case African contexts. Continue Reading…

In the afterword of Stephen King’s highly regarded memoir/writing guide book On Writing, the bestselling writer shared a list of 96 books that he’d read while writing the book that he’d enjoyed and had influenced him. When a 10th anniversary of On Writing was released, an updated reading list of 82 books was included.

More recently, King has taken to Twitter to share with his fans and followers some of his favourite recent reads. Since joining the social media site in December 2013, he’s recommended the following 22 books.

1. Red Moon by Benjamin Percy

Stephen King Reading List - Red Moon by Benjamin Percy

   

 2. The Marauders by Tom Cooper

Stephen King Reading List - The Marauders by Tom Cooper

 

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As we explained in last year’s F. Scott Fitzgerald eBooks Collection post, Australian copyright law means that the works of many 20th century authors are freely available in the public domain, despite being still under copyright in the United States and elsewhere. This is because until 2005 Australia had a ‘life of the author plus 50 years’ copyright rule, making the writing of any author who died before 1955 freely available.

Thanks to the University of Adelaide, readers in Australia now have access to free and legal eBooks archive of works by George Orwell. The books are available to be read online, downloaded as ePub files (suitable for most eReaders), and in a format accessible on Kindles.

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“He has never been known to use a word that might send a reader to the dictionary.”
– William Faulkner on Ernest Hemingway

“Poor Faulkner. Does he really think big emotions come from big words?”
– Ernest Hemingway on William Faulkner

This infographic designed by Jan Diehm for The Huffington Post shows that even the world’s most celebrated writers aren’t above dishing out a good insult to their literary rivals. Hover over the arrows between the authors to see a cutting critique directed by one to the other.

 


Online Tools for Writers
A guest post by Kelly Gardiner

There is a whole range of free online tools that are useful for organising your work as a writer. Here are a few basics:

Browser

Most of us take our web browser for granted. If you own a PC with Windows like most of the world, you might use Internet Explorer. Nowadays many people use other browsers like Firefox, Chrome or Safari.

Whichever browser you use, you need to know that they have changed a lot over the years and you need to keep updating (they’re free, so why not?). They also come with a great many more bells and whistles than they used to, such as better management of your bookmarks or favourites.

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