SHARING WRITING SKILLS

Sharing Writing Skills: a collaborative work by Randwick Writers’ Group, published by Ginninderra Press, March 2020. I am proud to introduce you to our new publication, Sharing Writing Skills. As the title implies, this book is the result of six members of the Randwick Writers Group sharing their thoughts, ideas, feedback and above all, their Writing, from early drafts to the finished product. Read how working with the group has changed each author’s work, polishing and revising draft after draft. Share with us the strategies, methods and skills that have brought our writing to publishable standards. Buy now from the publisher (see below) or as an e-book from most online bookshops. Endorsement by Thomas Keneally: ‘ We are social animals, but our creativity sometimes demands we withdraw into loneliness to write the work that only as individuals we can do. This tension between necessary solitude and our social and communal creative needs is the trigger for a Writers’ Group, like this one, one in which we confront our common problems and share our work so that we can go into the cockpit of writing with greater courage and greater certainty. Book info Title: Sharing Writing Skills ISBN: Paperback 978 1 76041 891 5 Authors: Dina Davis, Garth Alperstein, Susan Beinart, Helene Grover, Anne Skyvington, Geraldine Star                  Editors:                  Dina Davis, Susan Beinart Publisher: Ginninderra Press Publish Date: 03/26/2020 Switch to E-Book

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Writing by the Rules (Or Not)

Is it only our greatest writers who are allowed to break the rules of writing? And what exactly are these rules? Mantras such as ‘Show not Tell’ ‘Point of View’ ‘Omniscient Narrator’ or ‘Close Third Person’ seem to abound in 21st century writing guides. I doubt whether the great Virginia Woolf, George Eliot, Jane Austen, or Ernest Hemingway had ever heard […]

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Writerly Darwin

              Did you know that Darwin is a Mecca for writers, artists, and all souls creative? In my three months in the Top End, I have been published in the NT Writers Anthology, been shortlisted for a literary prize, participated in a left-of-centre Writers’ Group called ‘Write Now’, been invited to Government House for […]

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The Joys and Perils of the Writing Life

The Joys and Perils of the Writing Life So here I am, as Abraham said to the Lord when offering up his son for sacrifice. “Here I Am” is the title of a wonderful new book by Jonathan Safran Foer, a monumental work close to 1000 pages, exploring themes of cultural identity, fidelity and betrayal, the ephemeral nature of love, families functional and dysfunctional, and what makes them so. As for me myself and I, this post is in the nature of an apology to you, my readers, for my untoward absence. SInce I last posted back in April, life has overtaken me. There’s been illness, convalescence, slow recovery, as well as the joys of grandchildrens’ birthdays. and celebrations of their achievements, some sojourns in beautiful Darwin, home of my daughters and grandsons, and the minutiae of everyday life. On the writing side, I’ve been hard  at work on my new novel, ‘A Difficult Daughter’, and preparing my first novel. ‘Capriccio’, for publication. This entailed a major rewrite, mostly in appeasement to Faber and Faber, publishers of the works of Ted Hughes and Sylvia Plath, and the Hughes Estate. Like Jonathan Bate, I fell foul of the Estate when requesting permission to quote thirteen lines of Hughes’s poetry, fully expecting dispensation for such a small amount of material. The lines I quoted were used to introduce chapters, each of which was given the title of one of the ‘Capriccio’ poems […]

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Ten Tips for a Writers’ Group

These tips from a New York based writer could equally apply to my Randwick Writers’ Group. Reblogged from Lee Kofman at leekofman.com.au Guest post by Tracy Sayre Over the years I’ve learned a lot about what works and doesn’t work in writers’ groups. Here’s a list of my top ten tips. 1.Find the group. Facebook is a great place to start. Post a message that you want to begin a writers’ group and you’ll be amazed by how many of your friends harbor a desire to write. Alternatively, you can contact bookstores, colleges, and libraries to ask if they know of a group you can join. There are also websites like Meetup.com that have information on local writers’ groups. 2.Keep it small. I think the best size for a group is 4 people. If it’s smaller, you won’t get varied feedback, if it’s larger, you spend too much time reading other people’s work. I’ve also found with larger groups people tend to cancel last minute because they don’t feel like their attendance matters that much. 3.Plan ahead. One of the worst things you can do is leave the schedule vague. We all dread that never-ending email chain where everyone’s rescheduling. From the beginning, decide when you’re going to meet, for instance every other Tuesday at 7 pm, and stick to it. youa 4.Set the format. Determine if you want to read the pieces out loud at the meeting, or if everyone […]

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Approaching a literary agent

Australian Literary Agents’ Association Finding an Agent I’m a writer. How do I bring my work to the attention of a literary agent? First, read the information and advice on this page. You may wish to print it out for future reference. It is about three printed pages long. Second, look up a suitable agent from our list of member agents (click on the tab marked ‘Members’, above, to see the list), and phone them to check that they wish to see your work. Phoning first saves time and expense, because some kinds of writing are not of interest to some agents. Screenplays and plays are only dealt with by agents who specialise in that area, for example, and some agents may not wish to deal with children’s writing, and so on. Third, if an agent wants to look at your writing, they will generally ask you to post a copy of a one-to-two-page synopsis of your book, together with copies of some pages from one or two sample chapters (up to a maximum of fifty pages total), to their office. They usually do not want to see the whole work at first. Please note: send copies, not the originals. Always keep the originals in a safe place. Agents cannot be responsible for loss of material. Here are some further points to note. Please read them all carefully — it is very difficult to recover from an inadvertent bad first […]

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How to Bring Your Writing to the Next Level

10 HINTS FOR SELF-EDITING (re-blogged from ‘Write to Done’) The old cliché “practice makes perfect” applies to the editing process. Many best- selling authors note that the art of writing is really the art of re-writing! Polishing what you write can make all the difference. Take diamonds. In the raw, only experts can spot them. But once they are cut and polished, they sparkle and shine.This is what good editing can do to your writing.But there is a problem. The old cliché “practice makes perfect” applies to the editing process. Many best-            selling authors note that the art of writing is really the art of re-writing! The good news is that self-editing is a skill that can be developed. Sound good? Let’s get to it. 1.Get Some Distance from Your Writing In many cases, the reason you find it hard to go back over your work is that it   makes you feel bad. It may be that you don’t feel satisfied with your work and   worry about how it will be received. You may also been just plain bored with it! Whatever the negative emotion, a way to face it is to imagine that you are sitting  down to edit someone else’s work. That can help give you the distance to see your  writing from a fresh perspective. And take comfort from the fact that many  successful authors hate their first drafts too! “For me and most of the […]

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Getting Started

Do you endlessly procrastinate, fill your precious witing time with Facebook, phonecalls, or housework? Anything but facing that blank page or screen? You are not alone, dear writer. A myriad irrelevant distractions can fill my day, until the motivation and energy have flown, and I am filled with endless self-recriminations. Please post your experiences, and solutions if you have them, […]

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The writing zone.

How do you get yourself into ‘the writing zone?’ Are you a morning, afternoon, or evening writer? Or, like me, are you a procrastinator, unable to start writing until the house is clean, beds made, washing up done? For someone who hates housework, I manage to find it an attractive alternative to facing the blank page, or screen. Yet I’m […]

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