Showing posts from December, 2015

Are You Ready for the 2016 Ray Bradbury Writing Challenge?

Ray Bradbury was a hugely popular science fiction author best known for his novel Fahrenheit 451 and it is one of his many inspiring writing tips that will be heavily influencing me for 2016. Ray Bradbury argues that; "When you start writing short stories, the quality doesn’t really matter; you’re practicing your craft. At the end of the year, you’ll have 52 short stories. It’s almost impossible not to have at least one good story among those 52. Writing short stories will teach you to be constantly looking for ideas. In addition, every week you’ll be happy, because by the end of each week you’ll have something to show for your efforts." Wise words indeed and as 2015 draws to  a close it's time to set out some new targets for my literary pursuits. I've found that setting myself targets is a great way to stay focused at motivated. I've been very fortunate to have had a few short stories published in 2015 in the wonderful Sanitarium Magazine, Siren'

Sanitarium Magazine Issue 33

Sanitarium is a monthly horror magazine that brings you the best cutting edge horror fiction, dark verse and macabre entertainment. It's a fantastic read and I heartily recommend it to anyone who loves horror. It's out on the 20th of every month and is available in print and download from Amazon. Sanitarium is about to release it's landmark 40th edition of it's magazine. To mark this special occasion the editor of Sanitarium Magazine, Barry Skelhorn has been interviewed by Casey Chapman who runs a wonderful blog called Severed Scissors . If you're a fan of the wonderful Saniatarium Magazine do check out this excellent interview here. Issue 33 features outstanding original fiction from the most exciting up and coming horror authors. There's also articles; Re-skinning Werewolves by R.Donald James Gauvreau and a review of Sharkpunk Stories with Bite ( edited by Jonathen Green) by Kit Power. There's also a great interview with legendary horror author Adam Mi

How to Write for Fun

I've recently finished a second draft of a novel I have been writing for the last two years and although it was an incredible feeling to get that far, it has left me really drained. I feel like I need a six month break from writing but am fearful my writing may suffer. I also worry whether this is the beginning of a serious bout of the dreaded writer's block. It's taken a year of hard graft to complete the second draft and towards the end working on it day after day it was beginning to feel like a chore which for me is a massive warning sign that something is going wrong in my novel. Recently, I read a great tip on writing which warned that if you're not having fun writing it, no one is going to have fun reading it. Then I came across this great little article on Buzzfeed written by Hayley Campbell , about the writing style of Neil Gaiman. He talks about how he writes all his novels by hand. For example his novel Stardust was set in the past and he bought a fountain

How to Write a Brilliant First Chapter

The first chapter in your book is the most important chapter for a number of reasons It must be able to convince a reader to read it right until the end which is a big commitment of time and effort Not only does it need to convince your readers of the worthiness of your book but also any agents or publishers. These people are hard to please, they may be extremely sceptical when they begin If your first chapter isn't brilliant no one is going to carry on reading your wonderful tale and an unread book is a terrible thing. It's no good having some brilliant chapters at the end or middle of your novel if the first one isn't up to par. When writing and editing your  undiscovered masterpeice it's a good idea to think of the first chapter as a thank- you to the reader for turning the pages. You should reward your readers at the tale's beginning, not just at the end.  Your first chapter should be like a showcase, use it to show off your linguist