That Killer First Page – Submitting to Competitions and Journals

 That Killer First Page – Submitting to Competitions and Journals

Crescent Arts Centre

2-4 University Street

Belfast BT7 1NH

August 5th. 10am-1pm

Tickets: here

PaulMcVeigh short story

This year Paul is judging:

The Penny Dreadful Novella Prize alongside Sara Baume and Colin Barrett. Deadline: Sept 30.

The I is Another Short Story Competiton from Holland Park Press alongside Laura Del-Rivo. Deadline: Aug 31.

The sole judge of the Bare Ficton Short Story Prize. Deadline: Oct 31.

 

Content

You’ll find out what competition judges and journal editors look for in a short story and how to avoid the rejection pile. You’ll write a short piece and get feedback on that crucial story opening. In a form where every word counts, get tips on staying focused on your story and where to start the action. You’ll also look at submission opportunities; how to find them and where you should be sending your stories.

Focus:
How to get the attention of competition judges and editors
Writing fiction with emotional impact
Writing that killer first page
How to edit your story
Where to send your work

Paul McVeigh’s short fiction has been published in journals inc The Stinging Fly and anthologies and been commissioned by BBC Radio 4. He has read his work for BBC Radio 5, at the International Conference on the Short Story in Vienna, Belfast Book Festival and the Cork International Short Story Festival. Upcoming at Wroclaw Short Story Festival, Poland.

Reviews for his writing:
“Absolutely loved it. The voice of that story is so arresting.” Jackie Kay
“Beautiful and very moving.” Booker shortlisted Alison Moore
“Its such a clever story, gentle, poignant, emotionally straight as a dart.” Vanessa Gebbie
“(one of) Ireland’s most exciting and talented writers.  Incredibly moving; poignant but utterly real, funny and beautifully observant.” BBC Radio 4
“Paul McVeigh’s story stands out. Funny, moving, poignant. Brilliant.” Metro Newspaper

Paul’s short story blog shares writing opportunities and advice and gets 40,000 hits a month internationally. He’s interviewed short story masters like Kevin Barry, Cate Kennedy, Laura van den Berg, Elizabeth McCracken and George Saunders. Paul co-founded and has been the Director of London Short Story Festival for the last 2 years and is Associate Director at Word Factory, the UK’s leading short story literary salon. He is a reader and judge for national and international short story competitions.

This event sold out in Melbourne at Writers Victoria, Waterstones Piccadilly, London and Cork World Book Festival.

 Comments on this class:

“Fantastic! Practical, targeted advice like this is wonderful!”
“This was my fav course yet! Informative, entertaining, and engaging. Hard to beat.””I emerged from the sleepy hamlet of my writing infancy last Saturday and was sky-rocketed, hurricaned, tsunamied, autobahned and g-forced out of my head by Paul McVeigh’s “That Killer First Page” Masterclass at Waterstones, Piccadilly. He’s on top of his game, gives instinctive, constructive criticism and in a few short hours, had conveyed the essence of how to make a story compelling and unputdownable from the first few lines. Get on one of his courses if you can.”

Paul’s debut novel ‘The Good Son’ is out with Salt Publishing.

‘A work of genius…’ Pulitzer Prize-winning Robert Olen Butler

‘Outstanding.’ Granta Best Young Novelist Toby Litt

‘I was blown away… A wildly important new talent.’ Laura van den Berg

‘One of those characters you believe in with all your heart.’ Booker shortlisted Alison Moore

‘Establishes McVeigh as an important new Irish voice.’ Lucy Caldwell

Places are limited to 20

FOR CONCESSIONS and for discount for taking both his Crescent Arts Centre classes PLEASE EMAIL: paulmcveigh@writer.co.uk

Word Factory #35 & Masterclass – 25th July – London

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Join the Word Factory for readings, conversation, masterclasses and publication with the most inspiring short fiction writers.

Story in Motion: with Jane Feaver

Jane Feaver is a novelist and short story writer, whose a collection of inter-linked stories, Love Me Tender, was shortlisted for the Edge Hill Short Story Prize. Read more about Jane.

‘…the essence of the story is motion. Do not let your chair be “a straight chair, with no arms and a hard wooden seat.” Let your heroine go over and take a firm hold of the back of a straight wooden chair, because at the moment it is stronger than she.’ Shirley Jackson ‘Notes for a Young Writer’. Jane Feaver, the novelist and short story writer, will explore the use of gesture and motion in the short story with reference to the work of Flannery O’Connor. Raymond Carver and more.

This workshop will study the gesture in the short story and some of the ways we might put ‘moveable articles’ to effective use. Suitable for writers sending work out and published, a chance to write and pay attention to detail.

SOLD OUT

Short Story Club – 4.15-5.15pm
Roald Dahl: The Great Automatic Grammatizator

Join us in July when we will read a dark and twisted (but bitingly funny) short story – The Great Automatic Grammatizator – by the brilliantly playful Roald Dahl. The story, written in 1954 (but still alarmingly relevant) imagines a world where stories are written by machines. This will strike a wry chord with all writers out there…

Email Sophie Haydock for more details and a copy of the story: sophie@thewordfactory.tv

The Word Factory #35 – the intimate short story salon – 6-8pm

Book your tickets here.

Join us for an unmissable evening of storytelling with award-winning children’s author Michael Morpurgo; short story champion Jane Feaver; and one of the UK’s best short story writers Stuart Evers, chaired by Word Factory founder Cathy Galvin.

VOTE FOR US! WORDS AND WOMEN SHORTLISTED FOR A SABOTEUR AWARD!

Words and Women are delighted to announce that they have been shortlisted for a National Saboteur award in the ‘best one off event’ category.  The nomination is for this year’s International Women’s Day celebration held on March 8th at the Forum in Norwich. The literary event with a difference saw not only the launch of Words and Women: Two, a second anthology of contemporary women’s writing from the East of England but also the performance of four newly commissioned texts for ‘About,’ an Arts Council supported project which explores the relationship between women and place.

Words and Women’s trademark warmth, eclecticism and vibrancy was on show in Norwich as organisers Belona Greenwood and Lynne Bryan hosted a range of outstanding women writers from the region, reading their winning entries featured in the anthology. Words were intermingled with live music from Anna Mudeka and Sithabele Dube. There were stunning performances from actresses who took on the roles of 16th century Jane Sellars, found ‘idle at Trowse,’ a woman on a pilgrimage of grief, a railway woman’s quest in wartime Britain and a young prostitute, Anguish, incarcerated in a 19th century lunatic asylum, directed by Adina Levay of Chalk Circle Theatre Company and supported by the Arts Council.

‘The event drew a great audience of men, women and children, a range of ages and people travel from as far away as Peterborough and Cambridge to be with us.’ Said Belona Greenwood.

‘It is a really exciting to be shortlisted for this category. We want to encourage people to vote for us. It’s easy, just click on the link.’   VOTE NOW!  http://www.saboteurawards.org

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Rozzy Burt as ‘Anguish’ in Counting the Pennies by Tess Little, one of the ‘About’ commissions supported by Arts Council England.

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Lora Stimson reading her winning story, ‘Cornflake Girl’ at Words and Women on IWD, March 8th..

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‘Words and Women: Two is an excellent anthology of imaginative and superbly written pieces.’ RM Bond-Webster, Eastern Daily Press.

Word Factory #33 & Masterclass – 30th May – London

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Join the Word Factory for readings, conversation, masterclasses and publication with the most inspiring short fiction writers.

The Only Rule Is Yes with Stella Duffy – 1-4pm – SOLD OUT

Stella Duffy won’t teach you how to write the great British novel, provide you with a step-by-step structure with which to write a bestseller, or spend hours reading aloud the works of others so that you can compare your own writing (unfavourably). She will help you acknowledge your writing fears and enthusiasms, find delight in being brave, take the big steps you’ve been dreading and the small steps that feel even harder, and help you remind yourself why you wanted to write in the first place.

Editor’s note: Unfortunately Stella Duffy’s writing workshop is now sold out, however there is time to book your places for Michèle Roberts and David Almond‘s masterclasses at the Tablet festival in Birmingham on 19th June or experience Word Factory at the London Short Story Festival on 21st, June. Take note to be online at 9am on 15th May when we will make tickets available for Neil Gaiman‘s masterclass Q&A with Cathy Galvin taking place on 27th June.

More information and booking here.

Short Story Club – 4.15-5.15pm
Tessa Hadley: One Saturday Morning

Tessa Hadley is a British writer whose short stories appear regularly in the New Yorker. She has published many novels and two short story collections, and she read at the Word Factory salon in February 2015. Her stories have been described as ‘novels in miniature’ and also as ‘domestic fiction’, conjuring as they often do the minutiae of comfortable lives, where subtle shifts and minor observations can take on huge significance. Her stories may tread comfortable territory, but they leave a long-lasting impression of disquiet with the reader.

In ‘One Saturday Morning’, published in The New Yorker in August 2014, ten-year-old Carrie’s piano practice is interrupted by the arrival of Dom, one of her parents’ bohemian friends. We follow her as she tries to make sense of the adult news and events that define the rest of the day. Is this a story in which nothing really happens, or does it illuminate a pivotal coming-of-age moment? Come and discuss this subtle, affecting story with us.

Email Sophie Haydock for more details and a copy of the story: sophie@thewordfactory.tv

The Word Factory #33 – the intimate short story salon – 6-8pm

Book your tickets here.

An unmissable evening of Irish lyricism and fire. Join acclaimed new Irish talent Danielle McLaughlin, recently published in the New Yorker; Belfast-born Word Factory associate director Paul McVeigh; author and power-house Stella Duffy (Ireland via New Zealand) and Dubliner Evelyn Conlon for new work and conversation focused on the enduring strength of the Irish short story. Blarney-free discussion guaranteed, chaired by Cathy Galvin (Ireland via Coventry) .

Future Way: Call for Submissions

Calling all doodlers, ponderers, writers, poets and dreamers!

Submit a short story for a chance to be part of an exciting and unique, collaborative public art project in Redcliffe, Bristol.


Following the success of the Bristol Story Trail earlier in the year, get ready for Future Way brought to you by Dream of a Shadow, an online project bridging the gap between reality and fantasy through storytelling.

Working with The Redcliffe Neighbourhood Development Forum (@MoreRedcliffe), Future Way seeks to engage the people of Redcliffe and the wider community of Bristol through a playful and exciting exploration of the area using storytelling.

This is an amazing opportunity for published authors and budding writers in Bristol to collaborate with artists, architects and community groups in a first-of-its-kind, art project which challenges the way we view our city.

King of Christmas Steps

Contributors are encouraged to think about how Redcliffe may be used in the future and set tales within this. Because of the nature of the project, the brief is quite specific and submissions must meet the following criteria:

  • All entries must be set in the future Redcliffe area (how far is up to you)
  • All entries should be in 3-5 sections of 250 words (max) each, forming a trail through the area
  • Each section is planned to be tagged to a specific point within Redcliffe, i.e. a wall, lamp post, street, door etc.

The deadline for submissions is Monday 20th April 2015, so there’s plenty of time to get writing.


Please look at the website for the full brief before getting the pens out!

For any queries tweet us @DoaSLiveFiction and be sure to follow to stay up to date!

Happy writing and good luck!

Bristol Story Trail Needs Writers!

Calling all doodlers, ponderers, writers, poets and dreamers!

Get ready for the Bristol Story Trail (starting 15th Feb 2015) brought to you by Dream of a Shadow, an online project bridging the gap between reality and fantasy through storytelling.

Dream of a Shadow is collaborating with published authors and budding writers in Bristol to map the city through the magic of storytelling in an event running alongside Bristol Storyfest 2015.

The more creative minds, the better. So we are currently looking for short story submissions from you – these can be as little as 50 words, or up to 1000 and should be based in Bristol (loosely in the area around Spike Island).

So take a moment and get involved in writing the city!

All stories submitted will be included in the Bristol Story Trail alongside several other writers as well as in exhibitions later in the year, with any contributors fully credited and promoted. For more information, or to email your submissions contact livingfictionbristol@gmail.com

Don’t have time to contribute? No worries – you can still get involved and discover the city of Bristol through some wonderful short works of fiction! Follow us on Twitter to find out how, and spread the word… @DoaSLiveFiction #BristolStoryTrail #WritingTheCity and keep an eye out for new stories on the Bristol Story Trail website

 

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WORDS AND WOMEN’S COMPETITION WINNERS ANNOUNCED!

Lora Stimson, who studied creative writing at Norwich School of Art & Design and the UEA is the winner of this year’s Words and Women’s contemporary writing prize in the East of England.

The quality of the 170 entries was very high and there was a broad range of theme and style with women of all ages submitting prose from across the East.  Lora Stimson wins £600 for her original and quietly compelling short story, Cornflake Girl, which will feature in the second Words and Women anthology published in March this year. Lora’s story will appear alongside other highly commended selected entries and the four newly commissioned texts for ‘About,’ an Arts Council supported project which explores the relationship between women and place.

Lora has published stories and poems with Nasty Little Press, Unthank Books, Ink, Sweat and Tears and Streetcake Magazine. In 2014 she was mentored by novelist Shelley Harris as part of the WoMentoring scheme. Her first novel, about sex, grief and model villages, currently hides in a drawer. She has higher hopes for her second novel, about twins, which received an Arts Council England grant and is now in its final edit. Lora works as a programme manager for Writers’ Centre Norwich and sings with the bands Moonshine Swing Seven and The Ferries. She lives in Norwich with her husband and son.

Other prizewinners who will be published in the anthology, include Norwich-based Anna Metcalfe for The Professor, Hannah Garrard for Did You Eat Lunch? Melinda Appleby for Footprints on the Tideline, Julianne Pacheco for Kurt Cobain’s Son, Radhika Oberoi for The Reporter, as well as Patricia Mullin for The Siren and Thea Smiley who will appear twice, with her short story Magazines and her performance text, Holding Stones. A further 16 writers will also have their work included in the anthology.  For a full list of our winning writers please see our blog:  www.wordsandwomennorwich.blogspot.co.uk

The competition was judged by novelist Sarah Ridgard.

The launch of Words and Women: Two and performance of extracts from the ‘About’ Commissions’ will take place on Sunday, March 8th, on International Women’s Day at the Forum, in Norwich.

‘It has been another exciting read,’ said Belona Greenwood, co-organiser of Words and Women. ‘We had a hard time selecting our long list before handing the final responsibility for choosing the winners to this year’s judge, novelist Sarah Ridgard.  We have had a number of winning entries with some connection to the Creative Writing MA at the UEA which continues to bring new talent to Norfolk but entries have come in from all over the five counties displaying a great range of women’s voices.’

‘We judged the work anonymously and it was very exciting to find out the names of our winners at the end of this process. We have selected an outstanding mix of work, both fiction and non-fiction, and look forward to seeing it appear in Words and Women’s second anthology which will be published by Norwich based Unthank Books,’ said Lynne Bryan, Words and Women co-organiser.

Last year’s anthology was shortlisted for the national Saboteur Awards 2014. It has been praised as ’a bold and insightful collection containing much vigorous writing…’ Eastern Daily Press and ‘…a refreshing, vibrant collection that redefined the way I see women’s writing.’

Words and Women showcase women writers who live in the East of England, at all stages of their professional careers in an annual celebration of regional creativity on International Women’s Day, and through commissioning opportunities and an annual new writing prize.

See www.wordsandwomennorwich.blogspot.co.uk

 

SHORT FICTION JOURNAL CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS

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Short Fiction is now open for submissions.

To know the kind of fiction we like,  we encourage you to order a back issue before submitting. We have wide-ranging tastes and have happily published traditional character driven stories next to non-conformist work of extraordinary innovation. Novel chapters which function as self-contained units may additionally work well for us. Stories should be no longer than 5,000 words. Please submit only one story at a time.

To make a submission, please email in MS Word format to: shortfiction2010@googlemail.com

Our annual competition opens again on January 1st 2015, with £500 + publication first prize. Entrants receive a free copy of the next issue (worth £10), making entry (effectively) free!

Thank you for showing us your work.

Tom Vowler
Editor

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BEST EUROPEAN FICTION 2016 – CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS

Now coming up for its sixth year, Dalkey Archive Press’s Best European Fiction anthology has become a touchstone for literary translation. Over five editions the work of over 300 writers and translators has reached an audience of over 300,000 reader all around the world.

Seeking to include all countries from Greater Europe Dalkey Archive’s aim is that the rest of the world sees the rich literary work emerging from Europe each year.

Not only are the volumes published in English-language countries, there is also a Chinese edition in both print and electronic formats.

Widely reviewed and distributed, Best European Fiction has introduced writers and translators to publishers in many countries, and has led to writers in the volume being published in other languages and invited to festivals as far away as Korea.

Dalkey Archive is now accepting submissions of recent or forthcoming European short stories and stand-alone novel extracts for Best European Fiction 2016. We are looking for translations from all the countries that represent Greater Europe. We are interested in finding the best work from the Balkans, excellent writing from Albania, from the Basque region, Ukraine, Belarus, and Liechtenstein, work translated from Gaelic, Catalan, Welsh, Romansch, Greek, Flemish, and Hungarian, and all other European languages.

Submissions should be recently published in their original language (preferably within the last 5 years), and should not have been previously published in English translation. Submissions should be between 2,000 and 8,000 words long. Translators may make up to three submissions per language. We are not looking for authors who have already appeared in the anthology.

Please send submissions in Word format to BEF@dalkeyarchive.com

Submissions deadline: 15 August 2014

Manchester Review, Issue 12: Call for Submissions

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Dear writers,

The Manchester Review is currently reading submissions for Issue 12. We’re seeking previously unpublished high-quality literary fiction with an upper word-limit of 6,000 and no restrictions on theme. Novel extracts are welcome, but they must function as stand-alone pieces. We’ll be reading through until mid-May. Have a look at our archives for inspiration: in the past we’ve featured Kevin Barry, Jennifer Egan and Martin Amis – maybe next time we’ll feature you!

The Editors

(Ian, John and Valerie)