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Calendar of upcoming events

15th February: Magazine release date - February 2021 edition
16th February: WriteMaster MG and YA starts
24th February: #WMChat with Hannah Gold
25th February: *NEW COURSE* WriteCharacter with Emma Read starts
4th March: Book Club with Louie Stowell (for hub members)
10th March: #WMChat with Louise Gooding
24th March: #WMChat with Bethan Evans

Community Learning Hub

We are now officially open! We are already getting stuck into wonderful craft videos from our Writers in Residence, Clare Helen Welsh and Vashti Hardy, set up our online critique groups (which you can join any time), have booked Louise Stowell in to chat at our first book club and live analysis workshops coming up later this month.

There's so much to be gained from the Learning Hub (and we haven't even mentioned our extensive library of Hub Modules!)

Come join us; writing can be lonely, but it doesn't need to be.

More information on the hub here

Online Courses

We have a new page for all our online courses! 

We hope it's much easier to navigate now. Read below to see how you can be the very first to sign up for newly published courses.
*NEW COURSE*
WRITECHARACTER - EMMA READ
Dates: Thursday 25th February to Thursday 25th March (8pm-9pm)
Price: £79

WRITEMASTER YOUNG ADULT COURSE WITH ALEXANDRA SHEPPARD
Dates: Tuesday 16th February to Tuesday 23rd March 2021
With agent Jo Williamson
Price: £99

WRITEMASTER MIDDLE GRADE COURSE WITH LINDSAY GALVIN
Dates: Tuesday 16th February to Tuesday 23rd March 2021
With agent Chloe Seager
Price: £99

WRITEWORDS WITH LINDSAY GALVIN
Dates: Tuesday 27th April – Tuesday 25th May 2021
Price: £79

Children's Novel-In-Development Award

Entries are open until 16th May, 2021.

Read more about the award and it's eligibility criteria and rules here.

WriteMentor Magazine Issue 5 is released TODAY!

Read…

…Why Blackwell’s Book of the Year and Waterstones Children’s Book of the Month winner Elle McNicoll praises the power of small presses…

…A day-in-the-life of freelance children’s book editor Genevieve Herr, who has worked for Hachette, Macmillan, Bloomsbury, and Scholastic…

…Middle Grade author Nizrana Farook’s advice on how an author can struggle but eventually meet their main character…

…How writing his latest Young Adult novel was a cathartic awakening for C.G. Moore’s experience of chronic illness…

Hannah Gold’s journey towards publishing her much-anticipated Middle Grade debut ‘The Last Bear’…

…Why critique groups are important for writers…

…The witticisms of our Honest Writer

…The winning entries for our flash fiction and short story competitions under the theme of New Beginnings…

…Your recent writing achievements.

Buy here.

If you are a subscriber, you should have received your copy from Florianne last night around 7pm (GMT). If you didn't receive it, check if it went to the junk email, as mine did. And then check you have a current subscription here

If you have a current subscription showing up on your My Account, and you haven't received the latest issue via email, please let Florianne@write-mentor.com via email and she'll forward it onto you.

Enjoy reading!

Other Opportunities

Spark Mentoring

WriteMentor Spark is a monthly, online one-to-one mentoring service. Working with a children’s author, you will receive ongoing developmental editing, writing advice, publishing insights, and direct feedback on your manuscript to help you elevate your writing craft to the next level.

Spark Mentoring is always available if you need extra help or support each month.

 
Spark mentor Emma Read has offered to give ongoing free critiques to BAME writers - one free package per month of synopsis and 1st page.
Sign up here and she will work through the list, at a rate of 1 a month, so the quicker you sign up, the quicker you'll get some feedback.
https://forms.gle/g9fWLovv7oGxozYV9
Quick Spark editing is available for all ms from PB to YA.

Check out this superb post from Emma Finlayson-Palmer and Carolyn Ward on what to expect from Quick Spark here.
A fantastic opportunity with this long running novel competition run by Chicken House Books. They are looking for completed manuscripts and it's £18 to enter.

The competition will close for entries on 14 May 2021 at 11.59pm GMT.

For more details and to enter, look here: https://www.chickenhousebooks.com/submissions/
VIRTUAL EVENT: OH MG! A Weekend of Middle Grade

Date/Time
Date(s) - 27/02/2021 - 28/02/2021
10:00 am - 3:30 pm

More details and booking here: https://britishisles.scbwi.org/events/oh-mg-a-weekend-of-middle-grade/
We also have a whole page on our website with links to competitions and mentorship programmes. Click here.

Final word from...


Right, this is beyond a joke - get someone decent on next week, Stuart!
On Submitting to Agents

I am going to keep this short and sweet today.

In the next couple of months, I'm going to be treading that long and familiar path of sending my current novel out to agents.

Those of you who have followed me for a while know I've been around the block - more New Hope Obi-Wan than the fresh faced Phantom Menace Obi-Wan (or even the Revenge version!!).

All those books, all those rejections, peppered with the odd acceptance, one short spell with an agent and a publisher, and back to the drawing room again.

A career reset, I called it at the time. More like a career stall.

But I've restarted the engines, taken off the handbrake and were moving through the gears...light-speed next and an attempt to beat that 12 parsec record for the Kessel Run! Watch out Han...

So, when we arrive at that stage of sending to agents (which isn't after your first, second or even third draft - it took me over a 100 rejections on books 1 and 2 to learn that - I am a slow learner. There is a clear correlation between the number of drafts I do on a book, and the time I spend editing it, with the number of agent requests I receive on each subsequent book I send out. Books 4&5 each got more than 20 full requests from agents (having had a grand total of 1 full request on my first two books combined!).

DON'T SUBMIT TOO QUICKLY! AND YES I'M SHOUTING THIS TO MYSELF AS WELL AS TO ALL OF YOU!

I don't wanna get all Eminem on you, but you only got one shot! Do not miss your chance to (blow?) impress an agent! This opportunity comes once in a (lifetime) novel writing cycle.

But seriously, why spend 9 months (or 3 years!) writing a novel, to them send out a poorer version of it (and trust me, we all think sometimes that it's ready and 90% of the time when we think that, it's not). Give it one more pass, ask one more friend to give it a read, swap your ms with another writer. Read the whole thing out loud (seriously, I did this recently, and it's a great way to catch issues and lack of variation in sentence structure and length.) Try for that extra 5% that could be enough to make the difference.

Good luck if you're submitting to agents in the near future - if it helps, send a tweet when you're subbing and the rest of the WM community will come along and cheer you on, or when the rejections come, we'll be there to also help pick you up! 

Here's a great article from Chloe Seager on how best to write and submit your children's novel: 
Writing and Submitting a Children’s Novel

And our list of over 100 agents (UK and US) who accept children's fiction (just to give you a start - it's not a complete list and we'll working on this over time):
Agents 

Other ways to get an agent's attention, include programmes and competitions - we have a list of those for children's fiction on this page - we'll try and keep the info up to date, but it's meant as a starting block rather than a compendium:
Competition Opportunities for Children’s Writers

BTW, all of our first module is free over on the website if you fancy looking, as a teaser for what's to come in the rest of the hub modules, where we have help for writers from first idea to beyond publication.

Writing can be lonely, but it doesn't need to be.

May the Force be with you,

Stuart
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