We Need Diverse Books™, a grassroots organisation dedicated to promoting literature that reflects the lives of all young people, is inviting entries from unpublished writers for its middle grade short fiction contest.

The winning entrant will receive a US$1000 prize and their story will be included the Heroes Next Door Anthology, to be published by Crown Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Penguin Random House.  This new book follows WNDB’s first anthology Flying Lessons & Other Stories, published in January 2017, which featured many distinguished and award-winning writers including Jacqueline Woodson, Meg Medina and Sherman Alexie.

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The dos and dont's of workshop etiquette

A guest post by Laurie Steed

Writers’ workshops are the worst place on Earth.

For the uninitiated, said workshops exist for people to come together and critique each other’s work. Critiquing, of course, is the process of having your story dismissed, categorised and assaulted by a room full of strangers. In other words, it’s like being called up on stage and having your pants pulled down in front of an audience.

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Popular news and entertainment website BuzzFeed is accepting applications for its third annual fellowship program for emerging writers.

The program aims to provide writers with the support, mentorship and experience necessary to “take a transformative step forward in their careers.” The writers selected for fellowships in 2018 will each receive a US$14,000 stipend and spend four months working with the senior editorial staff at the New York City office of BuzzFeed News.

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Start Writing Fiction is a free online course offered by The Open University. The eight-week program focuses on a skill which is central to the writing of all stories and novels – creating characters.

Participants will hear from a number of successful authors, including Michele Roberts, Alex Garland, and Louis de Bernieres, as they talk about how they started writing. The rituals of writing and the importance of keeping a journal will also be explored.

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Iceland Writers Retreat is offering talented writers from around the world the chance to attend its April 2018 program for free.

For this scholarship program, writers can apply for either full or partial funding. The full funding scholarship includes a round-trip airfare plus the full retreat package including accommodation, tours, most meals and all workshops for the duration of the event. Partial funding covers the participant costs only and does not include accommodation or flights.

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