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Writer to Writer - August 2006

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Sign up for the fr^ee WritingAustralia.com eZine and get articles and information on writing in Australia delivered to your inbox every other week.

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Hi there Writers,

It’s really nice to be able to report that I haven’t spent any time in hospital lately!

I have however been quite busy.

Since the last issue, I’ve been accepted to write a regular (quarterly) article for a new magazine that’s about to debut in Australia. The magazine is called Executive PA, and I’m told it has been in the UK for several years.

My first article is due September 1, and it’s almost done. I’m just waiting for a teensy bit of information from an events company. (My article is about themed events.)

Yesterday I sat down and wrote an essay for an anthology, then submitted it. I won’t know until October whether or not my work will be accepted.

I’ve also sent off several query letters – one to a magazine, and another to a publication that’s looking for casual article editors.

I’ve also had a new release – Fiction on the Hop. This is a compilation of short stories with friend, writing buddy, and fellow Australian, Sarah Cook. You can read about it here.

As reported in the last issue, I headed off to Queensland for a writer’s conference on August 10. Leaving home at 4.45am was a bit hard – actually a lot hard! – but I survived it. If I had the time over again, I simply wouldn’t do it, but it was the only flight with available seats for that day. I guess everyone else was heading to the same conference!

The conference went well, although it was a pretty full on. Friday night we had a cocktail party with a Hollywood theme. I was a bit lazy – having to drag everything interstate - and just dressed in an evening gown and shawl, and anyone could have picked a starlet and I would have said yes, that was who I went as.

My friend Sarah Cook dressed as an Oscar to give us some additional publicity for our new website AussieAuthors. It went extremely well, and Stuart McDonald, marketing manager from Harlequin, was intrigued by Sarah’s costume, and also quite interested in our site.

The conference was held Saturday and Sunday, with an awards dinner on Saturday night which finished quite late. Then Sunday morning we had a ‘Pink Breakfast’ in aid of breast cancer, and it was a really early start (7am). This meant I didn’t get much sleep Saturday night.

I was so exhausted after these two events that I went back to my unit after the breakfast and slept for a couple of hours. That meant I skipped some of the morning talks, but I was back in time for the first workshop on Sunday. I was certainly more refreshed, and able to complete the day at the conference.

On Saturday I had an agent appointment. I wanted to pitch two books, so did the right thing and asked if I could. (You’re only supposed to pitch one book.) I absolutely hate these pitch appointments; I’m always extremely nervous. She allowed me to pitch both, and went on to request three chapters of both. To top it off, this US based agent suggested I send it all by email – even better since it costs a fortune to send manuscripts overseas from Australia.

The whole conference was wonderful – the RWAust was lucky enough to secure Debbie Macomber and Jane Porter, amongst many other wonderful speakers such as Australian authors Lillian Darcy, Anne Gracie, Sandy Cummins, and more. Debbie is probably the best speaker I’ve ever had the good fortune to hear, and was a really lovely lady. I had the opportunity to have a short discussion with her at the cocktail party.

I tried to purchase both Debbie and Jane’s books, but they were all sold out at the conference. I did manage to purchase one of Debbie’s books at a bookshop after the conference, so will be reading it with interest.

Once the conference was finished, my writing buddy (Elvina) and I had four whole days to do whatever we pleased. Yay!

I had intended to post a few photos but I'm so pushed for time at the moment and haven't had a chance. I'll endeavour to do this soon, but otherwise will *try* to remember for the next issue.

For a long time now I’ve considered purchasing the Nick Daws Writing Course, mainly because I’ve heard nothing but good things about it. (And you can never learn too much.)

After a discussion on an egroup I belong to, I went ahead and purchased it. The CD arrived today, and I hope to have time to sit down and use it in the next two or three weeks. (I’m absolutely snowed under with deadlines right now.) When I have used the program for a while and can give an informed review of it, I will do so.

In the meantime, I signed up for the fr^ee writing course offered at the site, and although I’ve only received about three lessons so far, have found it very useful. I urge you to do the same – after all, you’ve got nothing to lose. Here’s the link (Grab it now – I have no idea how long this will be offered for fr^ee.)

While I have your attention, I want to tell you about a new scam that’s going around. Yes, I know, enough scams already!

Surprise, surprise, this is another PayPal scam. Three days ago I received an email from PayPal Australia. It addressed me personally, which is unusual for scams, and said I’d made enquiries about starting a new PayPal account.

It just so happens that I’d received a (legitimate) customer satisfaction survey from PayPal just a couple of days beforehand, so assumed it was a follow-up from that. Anyway, the same day the email from "PayPal" arrived, I received a phone call from the author of the email. Since I was out at the time he left his number - a Sydney-based number - for me to call. I thought it rather strange since they normally give out 1800 numbers. (These are free calls in Australia.)

I was a little bit wary about this email, so sent it off to PayPal’s spoof address for verification. And you guessed it; the email did not come from PayPal. As a result of my email to them, PayPal are currently investigating this new form of scam to get people’s PayPal login details.

So, if you receive any emails from PayPal (or anywhere for that matter) that you’re absolutely not certain are genuine, follow up. To report suspicious emails to PayPal, send to spoof@paypal.com and send them the header details. They can be found by going to your inbox, right clicking and selecting options, then select all, and finally, copy.

Now hit ‘forward’ to send the original email to PayPal, and paste those details into the email with a short note.

My advice is to never click on any link you receive from "PayPal". Instead, type the details in your browser yourself. This goes also for banks, Amazon, and so on. All these businesses have been hit by scammers, and loads of people are having their identities stolen as a result. Identity theft is big business these days, and has been made so much easier with the Internet.

(Don’t these people have anything better to do?)

As a matter of fact, I’ve been receiving emails that say an attachment has been sent by the webmaster of www.cheryl-wright.com, or www.writer2writer.com – since I’m the webmaster, I know for certain I didn’t send it. (If you receive anything that says it’s from me or any of my sites, please totally ignore it unless I’ve specifically sent an email notifying you I will do so. More often than not I send links, not attachments anyway.

I've decided to try something new this month - writing prompts - and have included one in this month's issue. (Please do not send your work along, as it won't be read. The purpose of this is to kick start your writing, not to get feedback.)

Writing Prompt contributions are welcome, and will be credited.

Okay, onto this month's issue:  Markets Round Up will not be published this month as Deborah Ng is on holidays, Beth Morrow has reviewed Blockbuster Plots: Pure & Simple by Martha Alderson, M.A. - which sounds like yet another good book, and Judy Bagshaw has completed her two part article Common Mistakes New Romance Writers Make: and how to fix them!

This month we also have a guest article.  Karolina Blaha-Black has written an extremely informative article about writing scams.  I have to admit, I'd never heard of this particular scam, so was particularly grateful to Karolina for bringing it to my attention.  I'm sure you will be too.  (Grrrrrr, I'm so sick of scammers!)

Okay, that's our issue for this month, so sit back, relax with your favourite beverage, and enjoy!

Til next time…

 

Cheryl

 
 

 

 

This month's Writing Prompt:

Write about your favourite childhood toy.

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Featured Resource:

 

 

'Show, Don't Tell' Study Pack

Do you want to finally learn the secret ingredient to all good writing – and discover the tricks and techniques that WILL set you apart and easily enable you to create fiction no-one can possibly ignore?

Robyn Opie - author of 62 children's books shows you how...

Click here for more information.

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Quote of the Month:

 

 Life can't ever really defeat a writer who is in love with writing, for life itself is a writer's lover until death -- fascinating, cruel, lavish, warm, cold, treacherous, constant. 

-- Edna Ferber

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Purchasing through links and advertisements in this newsletter assist in keeping it fre*e.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Please note: Language is set as "English - Australia" - words are not spelled incorrectly.
(Not intentionally, anyway!)

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Writing Scams - How to Protect Yourself

Karolina Blaha-Black - All Rights Reserved

 

Writing scams are plentiful these days. It seems that every time the economy gets stagnant or slow, scammers figure out new ways to prey upon us, writers. Let me illustrate.

Several months ago I answered an ad on a freelance writing site. A Canadian-based company was looking for articles of different sorts to post on their web site, and the pay was about 30.00 for selected articles. I promptly replied to the ad, and sent in a submission. A few months later my article on organizing one’s writing research data appeared on their site as a feature story. I was glad at first, but as time went on a million questions started popping into my head.

 

Read the entire article here

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Featured Resource:

 

 

How to Write for Magazines

Why pay $100 or more for an online writing class, when you can now get Moira Allen's complete course, "Breaking into Magazines," in one low-priced book? How to Write for Magazines is an entire 8-week course for the beginning writer, including "assignments" to help you hone the skills in each session. If you want to start selling your articles to magazines and online markets, this book will show you the way!

http://www.writing-world.com/bookstore/index.shtml

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COMMON MISTAKES NEW ROMANCE WRITERS MAKE:

and how to fix them!

Part Two

Judy Bagshaw - All Rights Reserved

 
If you missed Part One, read it here

 

 

5.RELYING ON CLICHES (Purple prose and those awful euphemisms)

"Throbbing manhoods" and "soft milky mounds" are just two examples of purple prose you really want to avoid in your romance writing. Besides being awful, they're really dated.

Your readers are a more sophisticated crowd now. They'll handle words like "erection" and "orgasm". Breasts can be breasts, and not mounds, orbs, or globes.

Study the vocabulary in romance books currently on the market. Make a list for yourself of the terms used throughout for body parts, and intimate activity. Based on that list, brainstorm some original terms that fit the style and flavour of the currently accepted vocabulary, but are fresh and new and bring your own voice to the mix. Remember, there are all sorts of romance lines, from sweet to really steamy, and the vocabulary used will vary from line to line.

Also, your heroes don't all have to be tall, dark, handsome and slightly dangerous. Nor do your heroines have to be slight, blonde, blue-eyed and submissive. Today, readers want variety and more reality to the characters. Almost anything goes in today's market. There is a growing market now for more mature (40+) heroines. One publisher I know of, is interested in stories with characters who have disabilities.

 

Read the Entire Article Here

*This article is published at Romance Writer2Writer as well as other resources and articles for romance writers

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Featured Resource:

 

 

Easy Way to Write Romance

Romance outsells all other fiction by a factor of 5 to I, but it's also one of the most difficult genres to break into. Why? Because the competition is enormous.  The good news for you and me is that 90% of all romance manuscripts are reportedly terrible. This is because most new romance writers just don't understand the needs of publishers (magazine and book), agents and indeed, the reading public. This course takes a refreshing new look into the genre.

Go to http://www.writer2writer.com/ewtwromance.htm  to begin your career as a romance writer!

Now also available as an ebook! http://www.writer2writer.com/ewtwromancebook.htm

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Blockbuster Plots: Pure & Simple

by Martha Alderson, M.A.

Illusion Press, 2004

191 Pages

Reviewed by Beth Morrow

Copyright Beth Morrow 2006 - All Rights Reserved

 

Don't have problems plotting? Think a book on characterization, theme, editing or synopsis might help your writing more? Do yourself a favor and don’t dismiss Blockbuster Plots: Pure & Simple on the merits of title alone.

True--the majority of the book focuses on plot, how to go about discovering the one hiding in your story and strengthening crucial details to help it become, well, the blockbuster plot you envision. But throughout the book, Alderson provides more than plotting activities--she also gives lots of insightful writing advice that help you think of ways to improve your story in different, dynamic ways.

While the book boasts twenty three chapters (each only a few pages) and six appendices, the crux of the information focuses on two separate but equally important elements of storytelling: scene and plot.


Read the Entire Article Here

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Seeking Stories for an Anthology -- Fat Women getting their Revenge

 

I'm a fat gal with a publishing project on the horizon, and I need
submissions of short stories, essays or poems in which a full-figured
female gets sweet revenge -- against society, against one or more
individuals who alienated her based on her size, against anyone or
anything relating (directly or indirectly) to her feelings about her
body. That "revenge" can be of the "living-well-is-the-best-revenge"
variety, or flat-out twisted and murderous.

Got something that fits?

E-mail for more info or to express your interest. kbvoice@yahoo.com
Many thanks!

Kim in NYC

 

*Note from Cheryl: I haven't verified if this is a paying gig or not. 
I suggest you ask when emailing.

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Subscriber News:

 

Hello Cheryl,

My good news is that my first mystery, Murder at Blue Falls, will be out in October.  It is set on a dude ranch in the North Carolina mountains and some of the minor characters are real people (permission granted to use their real names).  Your friends can read about it at

http://maggiebishop1.tripod.com

Keep up the good newsletter.

Maggie Bishop

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Hi Cheryl

Hope your health is improving. This is to let you know that my crime novel, The Burning, is now available to be bought in issue form from Virtual Tales:

 http://www.virtualtales.com/StoryProducts.aspx?g=7&tn=Burning

and one of your other subscribers, Betty Dobson, is my editor!

I also had a story appear in the Silver Brumby anthology for children and won the artsnet Gippsland short story competition.

 

Jackie Tritt

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Just got word that my short story "Passing Through" won Third Place in the Hot Summer Something contest run by From the Asylum Books and Press. The story will appear on their website in September.

Now, "Passing Through" is a quirky little story about a young woman getting a late night visit from her recently deceased brother. That's right, I said "recently deceased." You'll just have to read the story to, well, get the whole story.

At any rate, you gotta love a website whose motto is "Confusing People Since 1994."

Or maybe it's just me.

 

Betty Dobson

InkSpotter Publishing

http://inkspotter.com/

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Congratulations to everyone for all this wonderful news!

**If you have any news, please send it along. (Don’t be shy – we won’t bite!)

Click here to email Cheryl

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Fr^ee Online Conference:

 

& The Muse Online Writing Conference: Lea Schizas, Editor of "The Muse on Writing," and Carolyn Howard-Johnson, of "Frugal Book Promoter" fame are sponsoring a virtual writers' conference on October 9th - 13th 2006 -- very possibly the first online conference as extensive as this. This conference offers writers -- published or not -- to mingle with some of the publishing world's personalities, to pose questions and learn from them, and to partake in many of the F~R~ E~E online workshops we will be hosting.

Bookmark this site:

http://www.freewebs.com/themuseonlinewritersconference/

It is now possible to pre-register. Pre-registrants will be assured of a place in the seminar or workshop of their choice.

Come back often to see the newest presenters and workshops. Shel Horowitz just accepted our invitation and we already have dozens of others. Carolyn will be presenting on both book promotion and the craft of writing, specifically "Writing Sparkling Dialogue in 10 Easy Steps."

To check on the growing faculty and workshop session, go to:

http://www.freewebs.com/themuseonlinewritersconference/agenda.htm

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How Do I?

No questions this month.

 

If you have a writing-related question, send it here.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Contests:

 

Coastal Writers 'Prime Rhyme Time' poetry competition

Australian residents only

Open theme
Rhyming poetry, maximum of 40 lines
Closes 31 October 2006

Entry Fee : 3 entries for $10
Prizes : 1st prize $100
2nd prize $ 75
3rd prize $ 50

ALL entrants receive a copy of the competition anthology

For details and entry form email: rosieq@westnet.com.au  or send an SSAE to :

Competition Co-ordinator
13 Rockford St
Mandurah  WA 6210

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TOM HOWARD/JOHN H. REID POETRY CONTEST

Postmark deadline: September 30

$3,500 in prizes, including a top prize of $1,000. Winning entries will be published. Submit poems in any style or genre. You may submit work that has been published or won prizes elsewhere, as long as you own the anthology and online publication rights. Entry fee is $6 for every 25 lines, payable to Winning Writers. Judges: J.H. Reid, D.C. Konrad. Submit online or mail to Winning Writers, Attn: Tom Howard Poetry Contest, 351 Pleasant Street, PMB 222, Northampton, MA 01060. Winning Writers is one of the "101 Best Web Sites for Writers" (Writer's Digest, 2005). More information:

http://www.winningwriters.com/tompoetry

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Featured Resource:

 

 

Outside the Square Fiction Workshop

Get published QUICKER than you ever thought possible! This book will teach you the essential ingredients
needed to write not good, but outstanding fiction.

Click here NOW to kick-start your WRITING CAREER!

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A Note from our Sponsor:

 

Write Great Short Fiction - and Then Sell it for Cash!

Order your downloadable copy of "How to Write Short Fiction That Sells" now and receive a free bonus
copy of the ebook "2006 Short Fiction Market Guide", containing 105 listings for publications all wanting
more short stories from all over the world! All of the markets listed will happily pay you for your short stories
- anywhere from $5 to $5,000. Just for a simple short story!

Don't miss out - grab your FRE*E bonus now!

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Featured Writing Courses:

 

Earn $125/hour (or more!) Writing for Websites

Quickly become a master web copywriter by discovering simple techniques for creating profitable copy - and charge hefty fees for your expertise.

To learn more, click here.

 

Easy Way to Write Romance

Romance outsells all other fiction by a factor of 5 to I, but it's also one of the most difficult genres to break into. Why? Because the competition is enormous.  The good news for you and me is that 90% of all romance manuscripts are reportedly terrible. This is because most new romance writers just don't understand the needs of publishers (magazine and book), agents and indeed, the reading public. This course takes a refreshing new look into the genre.

Go to http://www.writer2writer.com/ewtwromance.htm  to begin your career as a romance writer!

Now also available as an ebook! http://www.writer2writer.com/ewtwromancebook.htm

 

* A complete list of recommended courses can be viewed here: http://www.writer2writer.com/workshops.htm

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Ad Swaps:

 

Carolyn Howard-Johnson's e-zine "Sharing with Writers" includes promotion and writing tips and lots of opportunities for subscribers to promote their own writing-related news.  Sign by sending an e-mail with "Subscribe" in the subject line to mailto:HoJoNews@aol.com

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Funds for Writers - the grant specialist for writers.

Four amazing newsletters for writers with all sorts of income potential. http://www.fundsforwriters.com 

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FEEDBACK:

If you have any feedback about this newsletter; comments, criticisms, (praise!) sections you'd like to see added, tell me

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Submissions:

We are a paying market.  Full guidelines are available here, along with current needs.

Disclaimer:

Inclusion of a market, contest, anthology or similar is not necessarily an endorsement. It is strongly suggested that you do your own legwork in checking out any markets etc you decide to approach. If you feel wary or uncomfortable, there's probably a reason!

Advertising:

Guidelines for advertising, and ad rates can be found here

Legal stuff:

This ezine is commercial in nature, and by subscribing you consent to receiving the advertisements contained herein, and any additional 'solo' advertisements that may be forwarded to you.

You are receiving this newsletter because you subscribed - it is never sent unsolicited.

My privacy statement:

I will never, ever, (even under torture, threat of eating seafood or having my chocolate supply revoked) give-away, sell or divulge your details.

All portions of this newsletter are copyrighted, but should you wish to reproduce any article/s, please contact the appropriate author/s for details.

Subscribe & Unsubscribe:

Please feel free to forward "Writer to Writer" to your friends, associates, even enemies, provided it is forwarded intact. If you have received this email because someone has forwarded it to you, and you would like to receive your own copy each month, go to http://www.writer2writer.com to painlessly subscribe. (And grab your free gifts)

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This ezine is commercial in nature. If you do not wish to be subscribed, please use the unsubscribe link that can be found below this contact box.

Contact details:

mailto:cheryl@writer2writer.com

http://www.writer2writer.com

Cheryl Wright, P O Box 913, Springvale South 3172 AUSTRALIA