That Killer First page, Dublin, Oct 13

That Killer First Page, Oct 13

Venue: Brooks Hotel, 62 Drury Street, Dublin 2.

Date: Oct 13    Time: 10.30-4.30

Places are limited. This event sold out in Adelaide, Bali, Bath, Belfast, Cork, Galway, Kuala Lumpur, Lancaster, London, Melbourne & Singapore.  

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 anthologies and journals inc. The Stinging Fly and Faber’s ‘Modern Irish Writing’. Stories have been commissioned by BBC Radio 3, 4 & 5 and Sky Arts TV. He was shortlisted for Irish Short Story of the Year 2017 at the Irish Book Awards. His short story blog shares writing opportunities and advice and gets 40,000 hits a month and has had over 2 million views. He’s interviewed short story masters like Kevin Barry, Elizabeth McCracken and George Saunders for The Irish Times. Paul co-founded the London Short Story Festival and is Associate Director at Word Factory, the UK’s national centre for excellence in the short story. He is a judge for national and international short story competitions including, in 2018, the Sean O’Faolain Prize, the Edge Hill Prize and the International Dylan Thomas Prize. He is also the current fiction editor at Southword Journal where he recently commissioned Kit de Waal and twice Booker shortlisted Deborah Levy.                                                                                   

“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.”

Reviews for his short stories:
“Beautiful and very moving.” Booker shortlisted Alison Moore
“How moving and stunning that story is. It’s so raw and incredibly human.” Costa shortlisted Jess Richards
“(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 debut novel The Good Son’ won 2 awards and was shortlisted for a further 5.

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

“Both dancing and disquieting, complex and vivid, I devoured it in a day, but I’ve thought about it for many, many more.” Bailey Prize-winner Lisa McInerney The Glorious Heresies                                       ‘

‘A triumph of storytelling. An absolute gem.’ Donal Ryan

Places are limited to 15

FOR CONCESSIONS PLEASE EMAIL: paulmcveighwriter@live.co.uk

Brooks are offering a special lunch deal – two tapas plus a glass of house wine at €18.50 per person.

PaulMcVeigh short story

Fiction Workshop with Claire Keegan

Fiction Workshop with Irish writer Claire Keegan
Goldsmiths University, London
April 21 & 22, 2018. 9:30am–5:30pm, both days.

Claire Keegan, internationally acclaimed author and teacher of creative writing, will run a 2 day fiction workshop in London. This weekend will concentrate on works-in-progress submitted by the participants. Manuscripts (novel excerpt or short story of up to 3,000 words) are distributed to every participant and read with care by all. Keegan will spend between 3-5 hours on each text before the workshop begins and then examine and discuss every text with the group.

Discussion will include the structure of a narrative, paragraph structure, time, tension, drama, melodrama, statement, description, suggestion, conflict, character, humour, point of view, place and time. The aim, always, is to help each author with the next draft.
The weekend will be of particular interest to those who write, teach, read or edit fiction — but anyone with an interest in how fiction works, improving their prose and/or helping others to do so, is welcome to attend. While most participants like to submit a manuscript, this is not a requirement.

Tuition £380. To book your place, email ckfictionclinic@yahoo.com – Enquiries welcome.

Claire Keegan has written Antarctica, Walk the Blue Fields and Foster (Faber & Faber). These stories, translated into 17 languages, have won numerous awards. Walk the Blue Fields was Richard Ford’s Book of the Year in The Guardian, 2010 and won the Edge Hill Prize. Foster won the Davy Byrne’s Award, then the world’s richest prize for a single story. The stories have been published in Best American Stories, Granta,
The Paris Review and the New Yorker. Keegan also has earned an international reputation as a teacher of fiction, having taught workshops on four continents.

Of Antarctica: “These stories are among the finest stories recently written in English.” The Observer
“Every line seems to be a lesson in the perfect deployment of both style and emotion.”–Hilary Mantel
“Every single word in the right place and pregnant with double meaning.” – Jeffrey Eugenides, The New York Times
“Perfect short stories” – Anne Enright
“Keegan is a rarity, someone I will always want to read.” – Richard Ford
“The best stories are so textured and so moving, so universal but utterly distinctive, that it’s easy to imagine readers savouring them many years from now and to imagine critics, far in the future, deploying new lofty terms to explain what it is that makes Keegan’s fiction work.” -The New York Times

Word Factory Apprentice Award

WordFactory Logo is seeking four emerging writers to be individually mentored by leading authors, for FREE* as part of our renowned Word Factory Apprentice Award. The chosen writers will be talented, supportive of our inclusive ethos and willing to give their time to participating in our activities. They will have access to the Word Factory events and masterclasses – a programme offering creative inspiration, writer development and a unique community of supportive writers. They will also be invited to read their work with their mentor at a special Word Factory event. They will also be given a year long membership of the Society of Authors with alll the benefits and support of that organisation.

Our apprentice alumnae have achieved industry recognition including publication with independent and mainstream publishers such as Salt and Faber; awards and shortlistings including the Guardian BAME prize, Bath Flash Fiction Prize and Wasafiri prize; reviewing for journals and publications including the TLS, Economist and New Statesman.

The award is offered to talented authors on the way to their first collection of short stories or beginning to send work out for publication. We are committed to the development of our apprentices in the long-term. In exchange, we look for individuals willing to support other writers and be part of the growing team.

The 2018 Word Factory Mentors

Our 2018/19 mentors bring a vast range of experience to the award – plus a passionate commitment to the literary and social values of the Word Factory. We are delighted to announce that they are: BBC National Short Story Award-winner KJ Orr, Courttia Newland, Tom Lee and for the Northern Apprentice, Jenn Ashworth.

Apprenticeship Application 2018

We are seeking four emerging writers to be individually mentored by leading authors, for FREE* as part of our renowned Word Factory Apprentice Award. The chosen writers will be talented, supportive of our inclusive ethos and willing to give their time to participating in our activities.

They will have access to the Word Factory events and masterclasses – a programme offering creative inspiration, writer development and a unique community of supportive writers. They will also be invited to read their work with their mentor at a special Word Factory event. All winners will also receive free membership to the renowned Society of Authors.

Our apprentice alumnae have achieved industry recognition including publication with independent and mainstream publishers such as Salt and Faber; awards and shortlistings including the Guardian BAME prize, Bath Flash Fiction Prize and Wasafiri prize; reviewing for journals and publications including the TLS, Economist and New Statesman.

The award is now in its fifth year and we are delighted to announce a new 2018/19 partnership with the Northern Writers’Awards and New Writing North. One of our four places will be open to a writer living in the North who will also be offered a bursary to attend events in London, developmental support and access to other opportunities offered by New Writing North.

Please follow the link to the map which defines the North for purposes of this award: BOUNDARIES OF THE NORTH. And see www.northernwritersawards.com from November 16 2017 for full details of the Northern Word Factory apprenticeship, eligibility and how to apply.

Applications will be judged by the Word Factory and Sunday Times EFG short story award founder Cathy Galvin and associate director Paul McVeigh, winner of the Polari First Book Prize. The Northern Apprentice applications will be judged through the Northern Writers’ Awards, in consultation with the Word Factory and Jenn Ashworth.

The Word Factory is London based but this is no barrier to working with writers from across the UK. We are committed to opening the award to writers with no access to literary mentorship and from communities who are often excluded.

At least one place a year is held open for talented BAME writers.

Please Note: the scheme is not suitable for anyone with novels or collections already published or under contract (self-published and non-fiction books may apply). Also, application is only open to residents of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

Application is simple:

If you DO NOT live in the north of England— you will need to send us two files: your best 2,000 word story (or part of a story) and 500 words explaining both how the scheme will benefit you and what skills and commitment you will bring to the Word Factory. In the past, our apprentices have offered some of the following: social media skills; helping us run events; creating a flash fiction prize; supporting festivals. In your letter please tell us where you live and whether you have a BAME background.

What you do:

Use the link below to apply and pay a £20 admin fee.

Full details on how to send us your files will be included in your receipt.

Lastly, email us your story and supporting letter.

*Unwaged applicants can still apply. Please send your story, covering letter and short explanation of your circumstances direct to Paul McVeigh at paul@thewordfactory.tv

If you live in the North of England:

Follow this link: http://www.northernwritersawards.com

Important Dates:

Applications CLOSE on February 1st 2018.

WINNERS INFORMED May 2018.

Announcements at the Word Factory and Northern Writers’ Awards June 2018.

Mentorship completes March 2019.

Due to the high numbers of applications expected, we will not be contacting you if your application has been unsuccessful. Good luck! Look forward to seeing you in 2018.

Contact for Information.

 

Application Fee:  £20
Deadline: 02/01/2018

That Killer First Page – Submitting to Journals and Competitions

That Killer First Page – Lancaster, May 7, 10-4. Tickets and further details here.

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.

About Paul

Paul McVeigh’s debut novel ‘The Good Son’ is currently Brighton’s City Reads and was shortlisted for the Guardian’s ‘Not the Booker Prize’. His short fiction has been published in journals and anthologies and been commissioned by BBC Radio 4. He has read his work for BBC Radio 5, the International Conference on the Short Story in Vienna, Belfast Book Festival, Wroclaw Short Story Festival and Cork International Short Story Festival the last 2 years. He has represented short stories in the UK for The British Council in Mexico and Turkey.

Paul’s short story blog shares writing opportunities and advice has had over 1 1/4 million hits.

Paul is co-founder of London Short Story Festival and Associate Director at Word Factory, the UK’s leading short story literary salon. He is also been a reader and judge for national and international short story competitions. Completely Novel says that Paul is one of the 8 resources that will help you write a prize-winning short story.

Reviews for his writing:

“Heartbreaking..gripping” The Guardian

“A work of genius.” Pulizter Prize-winning short story writer Robert Olen Butler.

“Absolutely loved it.” Jackie Kay

“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

Comments for this class:

“Practical, insightful application of knowledge to writing.”
“Fantastic! Practical, targeted advice like this is wonderful!”
“This was my fav course yet! Informative, entertaining, and engaging. Hard to beat!”

This class has sold out in Bath, Belfast, Brighton, Cork, London and Melbourne.

PaulMcVeigh short story

Word Factory #41 & Masterclass – 19th March – London

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Join the Word Factory in March for a day, or evening, of inspiration!

Masterclass: A.L. Kennedy – He, She & Me: writing in and out of gender
2-4pm

This is the second masterclass of our Sublime Women series, linking classes, salons, our reading club and offering opportunities to hear your work throughout the year

In her book On Writing, A.L. Kennedy takes the line, ‘A man walks through a door’, to demonstrate the difficulties and potential of a simple beginning. If you are a woman writing this scene, is the task even harder? Can male authors write convincingly about women? Writing in and out of gender offers liberation, complication and inspiration. In an afternoon talk looking at writing outwith and within one’s own sexual orientation and drawing on her own work, A.L. Kennedy will take approaches to character in general as a staring point for further discussion. Audience members may participate in exercises and conversation or feel free to simply listen to one of the UK’s most accomplished authors.

Book your place here – limited to 25 spaces.

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Short Story Club
4.15-5.15pm

Join the Word Factory’s short story club and enjoy an espresso shot of great literature followed by a thought-provoking discussion. It’s fun – and free!

More info here, or email sophie@thewordfactory.tv for this month’s story.

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The Word Factory #41
6-8pm

Short-story writer, novelist and performer extrordinaire A.L.Kennedy leads our evening of readings as K.J. Orr launches her first collection, Light Box. They will be joined by two emerging authors selected in advance to read that night who were inspired by . Hosted by short story club maestros Sophie Haydock and Zoe Gilbert.

Get your salon tickets here.

 

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Word Factory Membership – Fellow and Friends
Become a Word Factory Fellow or Friend and enjoy priority booking and other exclusive offers.

fellowTo help you make the most of the dynamic Word Factory programme of interlinked salons, classes and other events throughout 2016 – featuring unmissable writers including Marina Warner, A.L.Kennedy, Tobias Wolff, Neil Gaiman and Tracy Chevalier, we would love to offer you access to our exclusive Word Factory Friendship Scheme.

The scheme is of particular value to writers who, in coming to our club, salon and classes, are being inspired in their work by some of the most accomplished writers in the world.

By becoming a Fellow or Friend, you are also helping the sustainability of the only organisation in the UK promoting and supporting quality short story writing – a unique not-for-profit literary company run by and for writers.

Find out about being a Friend or a Fellow.

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Year of Sublime Women

SublimeWomenMarina Warner, Helen Simpson, A.L. Kennedy, Tracy Chevalier, Helen Dunmore, Tobias Wolff, Kirsty Gunn, Deborah Levy, Neil Gaiman, Janice Galloway, Sarah Hall, David Constantine, Michele Roberts, Tessa Hadley, David Vann and many more Word Factory friends are joining us in a long overdue celebration of female short story writers.

Throughout 2016, they will be reading work by their favourite female writers, giving exclusive salons and lectures, and from this exciting literary platform we will be asking you to produce work inspired by our events.

Whether you want to savour the conversation or take up your pen and write a story inspired by Angela Carter, Alice Munro, Jean Rhys, Muriel Spark, Katherine Mansfield or Flannery O’Connor, we will find a space for you.

Full details of the classes and talks, content, class size and price, can be found on our events page.

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Short Fiction‘s first 5-week online masterclass filled up quickly, so if you missed out, we go again on March 6th. The course has been written and designed by our editors, who are all published authors and creative writing lecturers, and mines their wealth of experience, knowledge and passion for this most demanding of literary forms. Our aim is to unravel some of the mysteries and complexities of the short story, guiding you through the art and craft of composing pieces.

This immersion into the short story will include weekly feedback on your submitted work, the goal to produce a publishable piece by the end of the course. Study at home in your own time. Topics covered include:

A brief history of the short story

What makes stories come to life, and how to build them

Character, voice, narrative tension and dialogue

Beginnings and endings. Or just middles?

Obliquity, subtext, structure and lacunae

Less is more: the art of editing

Follow the link from our page here to find out more, and get your writing year off to a fabulous start.

Short Fiction Prize 2016

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We are delighted to announce our 2016 short story prize is now open for entries.
First prize is £500 plus publication, and the runner-up receives £100.
This year’s judge is award-winning poet and short story writer, Graham Mort.
The deadline is March 31st. Click here for more details of how to enter.
Good luck.

And why not get the year off to a fabulous start and treat yourself to our online short story masterclass, taught by award-winning authors and editors.

We only have a few copies of Issue 9 left – fiction by Toby Litt, Carol Mavor, Cynan Jones, Luke Kennard and Mary O’Donoghue, plus our competition winner. Artwork by David Shrigley – which you can order here.

Our new fiction page features stories from our archives, plus new work.

And look out for our series of interviews with some of the best short story writers out there.

From all at Short Fiction, we wish you a lovely and literary 2016.