Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Cleckheaton Writer's Group minutes

The Cleckheaton Writer's Group met last night at Cleckheaton Library with Kathy, Alice, Andy, myself and Sarah in attendance, Mandy, Arline and Neil having passed on their apologies.

The minutes from the last meeting were passed and we all gave WIP updates.  I have been plot planning, editing and writing, including a couple of poems, some more scenes of my WIP and what I hope to be the beginnings to a new literary novel.  Kathy has spent an hour working on her WIP, has written the synopsis and plot planned the novel out.  Alice is now halfway through her novel and she had a go at the writing challenge set at the last meeting, which she brought along to share at the feedback session.  Sarah has finished her novel, which has been long-listed  in the Bath Novel Award (fantastic news, huge congratulations Sarah and fingers crossed for the short-list announcement this week), written two flash fiction stories and has been looking at screenwriting and the BBC Writers Room.  She has also sketched out another novel and had a go at the writing challenge.

I started the feedback sessions by sharing the beginning of my new novel that I began during an inspiring creative writing workshop on 'identity' with Adam Z. Robinson on Saturday (see previous blog post for full details), which I explained had been likened to the work of Jeanette Winterson.  Sarah recommended that I read The Passion by the author.

Alice then shared her short story for adults (this was the first time she had written for adults) as part of the writing challenge.  It was a crime story entitled Undercover which we all enjoyed and we encouraged her to consider editing it down to 500 words with a view to entering it in a flash fiction competition.

Sarah then shared her short story written for the writing challenge entitled To Have and to Hold.  Members enjoyed its honest portrayal of a wedding day but Sarah is not sure that she is fully happy with it.

We then shared information on competitions, workshops and events:

There is a publishing opportunity via Anna Turner.  An anthology is looking for short stories set on the North West Coast and they wish to have five new writers involved.  For full details see: www.thebookseller.com/news/bluemoose-seeks-short-story-submissions-560796.

Bradford Literature Festival runs 30 June - 9 July and tickets are now on sale: www.bradfordlitfest.co.uk (further details in an upcoming post)

Leeds Big Bookend is on now, full details: www.bigbookend.co.uk

One of our members Neil had been in contact to let us know that Writer's Magazine has a free book with it this issue, How To Craft Great Story valued at £12.99, though the magazine is at a raised price of £5.99 but it will return to the normal price next month.  Also, he wished to know if anyone could help him with the fact that he cannot send emails via his Yahoo account though he can receive them (his inbox may be full).  Alice said that she could help if he has a mac computer.

Flash 500 competition deadline is the end of June with an entry fee of £5, see: www.flash500.com and the Bath Children's Novel competition is open now with a fee of £25 per novel and a deadline of 19 November, see: https://bathnovelaward.co.uk/childrens-novel-award/

The deadline for the Myriad First Drafts competition is 30 June and you will need 5k words and a £10 entry fee to win a Writers Retreat, editorial feedback and six months of mentoring, for full details see: http://www.myriadeditions.com/competitions/first-drafts/

The Blue Pencil Agency First Novel Prize deadline is 30 June, you will need the first 5k words, 300 word synopsis and covering letter along with a £15 entry fee, for full details see: https://fionamitchell.org/2017/03/29/the-blue-pencil-agency-novel-award/

I shared information on a competition that will be running tomorrow, Wednesday 7 June, on Twitter #pg70, you will need to have a completed novel, children's, MG, YA, New Adult or Adult, that you can share page 70 of and a seven word pitch for it, see: www.larawillard.com for full details.

We then spent the rest of the meeting trying to work out some seven word pitches for the novels that Sarah and I are thinking of pitching when we take part in the challenge tomorrow.  Wish us luck.

The next Cleckheaton Writers Group meeting is Monday 19 June 5.30-7pm at Cleckheaton Library.  New members always welcome.

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