Is writing for DNA Magazine on your list of things to do?

Are you curious about what goes on in the lives of other people? Ever wondered just how differently the person sat next to you views the world? Or wanted to re-live a moment from somebody else’s point of view?

If any of these apply to you, DNA Magazine is probably the literary journal for you.

These days, it’s all too easy for us to stick labels on people and dismiss them. These labels — millennials, baby-boomers, liberals, Tories, alt-righters, Brexiters/Bremainers, feminists etc we all hear them ­ — turn people in to caricatures, shallow characters defined by the stereotypes of that group. They create divisions and stifle empathy as individual stories are lost. We become nameless and faceless, statistics rather than people.

My goal for DNA Magazine is to publish stories that celebrate the lives and memories of ordinary people. To remind people of the experiences and events that make each of us different and unique. It’s harder to dismiss people when you hear about their personal experiences. Not all of us will do great things that will set us apart and be worthy of record in a full-length memoir, but all of us have interesting stories that we can share.

The first issue of DNA Magazine will be published at the end of May. Submissions are currently open for 300-500 word non-fiction pieces that are inspired by the theme of lists. These lists can be as simple as a shopping list or something more visual such as a group of people in a photograph, a collection of objects or locations. A list might be a series of ingredients that go into an old family recipe or a selection of facts that hint at a bigger personal story. You don’t have to include the list in your piece of writing — you might just reference something on it — I just want to find out about the hidden stories behind that list.

So far, I’ve had a varied selection of lists — everything from a list of closed London Underground stations to old playlists, to a group of people one writer sees at the bus stop every day to the items on another writer’s bed side table.

If you have a piece of writing you’d like to submit, please send it (with a photograph or copy of your list) to submissions@dnamag.co.uk. Submissions close on 24th March 2017. The submission guidelines can be found at www.dnamag.co.uk.

 

Katie Marsden

(DNA Magazine Curator)

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Story Sunday in Bristol: call for submissions

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Writers Unchained of Bristol are delighted to announce the next Story Sunday event will be on March 19th.

Our theme this time is Another Country and we are open to any genre of prose fiction or memoir

  • wordcount 500 – 1500
  • stories can be published or unpublished as long as you have the right to read it out.
  • deadline midnight Sunday March 5th
  • only submit if you can read on Sunday March 19th between 7 and 9 pm at Southbank Club, Dean Lane, Bedminster, Bristol BS3 1DB.

There’s more detailed information on how to submit on our website.

Don’t forget this is also an event for those who just enjoy listening!

Tickets for our audience  will be £5 on the door.

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Shooter invites submissions for “Cities”

The fifth issue of Shooter Literary Magazine will take the geographic theme of Cities, drawing upon the vitality and diversity of urban life – or, depending on the writer’s perspective, the grinding challenges of the crowded, fast-paced metropolis.

Writers may submit short fiction, non-fiction and poetry to do with historic, contemporary or futuristic cities, engaging with some aspect of the politics, pressures and allure of the urban experience. On the non-fiction side, insightful travel pieces revealing something unusual or unique about any city around the world are especially welcome.

Prose should fall between 2,000 and 7,500 words, and poets may submit up to three poems by October 16th, 2016. As always, Shooter seeks to uphold a high literary standard, so the quality of the writing is paramount. A vividly conjured urban setting is not enough to make a compelling story: we’re looking for pieces that explore some aspect of human experience unique to a city, stories that lead with character and illuminate the universal by means of the particular. Similarly, sharply observational, insightful poetry is preferred to obscure experimental fare.

For further guidelines on how to submit to Issue #5, please visit Shooter’s Submissions page. We look forward to reading your work!

A Very Topical Story

Read Paper Republic hasn’t posted on Short Stops for a while, but we’ve haven’t stopped publishing our weekly short stories translated from the best of contemporary Chinese fiction. I hope you’ve managed to catch some – there’s something there for all tastes.

Well, today’s a bit of a red-letter day. At the beginning of the week, the Chinese government announced the ending of its One-Child-Per-Family policy. At the same time, a talented young woman writer called LU Min wrote a thought-provoking, and thoughtful, story about her own family’s experiences during the years when the policy was at its most draconian. We’ve translated it and posted it here: https://paper-republic.org/pubs/read/a-second-pregnancy-1980/ . Here’s how Lu Min begins: ‘We often tease my little sister – “Your life’s worth 56 yuan” – so many years have passed that we no longer feel the pain, and we can see a funny side to it.’

Read, and enjoy.

A Second Pregnancy-LuMin-HWang:

Thinking of crowdfunding your short stories?

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Although it’s been around for a little while now, there’s still a slight wariness from writers considering the crowdfunding route as a way of getting their next set of short stories published. This is the route that allows writers to generate financial support from their personal and professional networks in exchange for physical rewards, and is emerging as an invaluable marketing tool for self-publishing authors as well as insightfully gauging the interest of a book early on, directly from potential readers.

‘It’s too much work’, ‘It’s not as prestigious’, ‘I might not get as much return for my book’ are all responses you might hear cautious authors giving as they assess their options. And for some books this might be true, but for others, crowdfunding is the route they wish was available years ago.

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The great thing about crowdfunding is that it’s the only form of publishing where readers can obtain the book directly from the author. It connects readers to the person behind the imagination, it attracts writers that are truly passionate about writing and sharing it with their readers, and it also invites readers to take ownership of what they love to read rather than simply judging a book from the safe confines of a bookshop.

You may not become the most famous author through the crowdfunding route, but you’ll certainly be able to grow a strong community of people committed to supporting your work. In addition, the satisfaction of shaping each stage of the writing, design and sharing of your literary masterpiece could be truly fulfilling.

‘With the introduction of crowdfunding, self-publishing no longer has to be a solo venture’. Positive Writer

And that’s where we come in. Here at GOODFRUIT we aim to address the two biggest hurdles to publishing and selling a book – obtaining funding and sourcing expertise. You’ll be able to gain both of these during your crowdfunding campaign through offering rewards in return for financial support (such as a copy of the book), as well as raising a team to help you (graphic designer, editor, printer).

So if you’re a budding or veteran writer we’d love to hear from you. Take a browse of the GOODFRUIT Lewis Literary Contest we’re launching – a contest searching for three writers who want to publish a story or publication they have written or working on. The GOODFRUIT Literary Contest will be calling for short story writers (including other genres) to step into the shoes of inspiring authors in history, to write and publish books with imagination and meaning, to challenge the hearts of readers and to bring their stories to fruition.

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Deadline: 23rd September

Rules and Entry Information: http://goodfruit.co/community/the-goodfruit-literary-contest/

Email literarycontest@goodfruit.co with any question

Dee Atkins is the Community Manager for GOODFRUIT, a new kind of crowdfunding platform where people pledge funds or skills to bring ideas enriching culture to fruition. Our mission is to make it as easy as possible for culturemakers (entrepreneurs, creators, authors) to launch and scale ideas/businesses. Dee loves a good book, second-hand stores and putting on new socks. dee@goodfruit.co

 

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