Bits & Pieces

I’ve got a few bits and pieces that might be of interest:

  • Lois Maddox has dropped me a line about two weekend creative writing courses that she is organising. They are both aimed at all levels of writing ability and take place at Swanwick in Derbyshire. The first is ‘From Memories to Memoirs’ . It is led by Alison Chisholm, who will deal with creating a scheme for a life file and selecting a theme or time period to write about. The second is ‘Write Crime’. It is led by retired policeman Nick Oldham and as well as dealing with plot and characters, it will look at setting the scene with up-to-date procedures. Further details are available at


  • My Weekly Pocket Novels have upped their required wordage from 30,000 to 50,000. Payment has also gone up from £200 to £300. As some of you may know, I’m having a go at writing one of these as a stepping stone to a ‘proper’ novel. I did have my ten 3,000 word chapters mapped out. So now it’s back to the drawing board to find a subplot or something else to extend (without padding!) the story. Further details here. 


  • is a new website, billing itself as ‘the home of Irish writing, online’. The events and courses listed on the site will mainly be of interest to those living in Ireland but there is also loads of free writing advice to be found on under the Writers’ Toolbox tab.   


  • The Telegraph has launched a short story competition for young writers aged between 16 and 18. It will be judged by John le Carre and the closing date is April 14th 2011. Full details here.  


  • I have to mention two small personal successes that I found out about last week. Firstly I have short piece about the Festival of Britain in the Cornucopia section of the current (Spring) edition of This England magazine. Secondly I have won the Writers’ Forum subscription that is up for grabs each month to the person sending in the best bit of news for the magazine’s NewsFront page. 


  • Finally, look out for an extra post on Wednesday – I am taking part in my first ever blogfest.

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  1. #1 by Patsy Collins on February 28, 2011 - 4:36 pm

    Well done on all your successes!

  2. #2 by Vanessa O'Loughlin on March 2, 2011 - 8:47 pm

    Hi Sally,
    Thanks so much for the mention!! The plan is to add new content every weel to build a really solid resource. And if your friend running the workshops wants to tempt people from over the Irish Sea we are very open to adding in UK courses! With the wonders of modern air travel and a following wind we can get over to the UK very cheaply!
    All best

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