The A3 Press is Open for Business

a3 press logoThe A3 Press has just launched it’s first two chapbook titles, and three more will be released by the end of March 2019. Created by the folks who publish The A3 Review, The A3 Press will publish 10-12 chapbooks every year.

We are open for submissions, and are looking for prose, poetry and artwork that tackles what it’s like to be alive at this point in history. We celebrate urgent work that might struggle to find a traditional home, work that’s lyrical and intense, a bit weird, hybrid and experimental. We also welcome work that’s traditionally beautiful. Please visit our Submittable page for full details. Deadline for chapbook submissions is 31 May 2019.

You can see our first chapbook titles here.

The A3 Review continues to run it’s monthly contests and to publish two issues every year. To be in the running to qualify for our next issue, Issue 10, enter our February contest on the theme of Romance. Full details here.

We look forward to reading your work, and do get in touch with any queries: a3@writingmaps.com

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Three New Things from The A3

A3 press copyThe A3 Review & Press announces its new monthly contest themes: Romance, parties, and whatever the word “top” inspires you to create. Anything from spinning tops to top-shelf magazines. Click here to see all the new themes, each with a deadline on the 4th Saturday of the month.

The current issue of The A3 Review has recently been published and is available to order here. Stories, poems and artwork about fairs, fireworks, and fathers, along with flies and zebras, too. Nancy Stohlman answers questions in the issue’s A6 Q&A.

The A3 Press is soon to launch alongside The A3 Review. The press is looking for manuscript submissions for this new chapbook press. Deadline for submissions is the 20th of November. Do you have a series of short stories, or maybe a long story that can be spread out over several pages? Do you have a combination of drawings and short stories? Or even photographs without text that would fit into our The A3 Press’s map-fold format.

The A3 Press will be a place for work that might struggle to find a traditional home, work that’s lyrical and intense, a bit weird, perhaps, hybrid, experimental. For all the details, please click here.

If you’d like to support the new press, you can also pre-order the first 6 titles via the website here.

From LGBTQ+ With Love: The Fight Back Flash Competition

Dearest compatriots, collaborators, friends, foes, gentlepeople, unicorns (both sparkly and plain), folkingtons, allies and everyone in between and either side and up and down and diagonal and round and round the whole glorious spectrum of humanity.

You may have heard about a rather unpleasant exclusionary flash fiction competition that’s been doing the rounds on Twitter lately. Not just exclusionary, but implying members of the LGBTQ+ community are somehow comparable to scenes of graphic violence or torture. Yeah. Not exactly what we want to see from a writing competition in 2018.

But you cannot fight hate with hate. The answer is love. Only love and always love. Whatever damn kind of love you’re into. Because love knows no bounds, people.

And so. Writers’ HQ are running a flash fiction competition on the theme: From LGBTQ+ With Love, with all proceeds going to MindOut, a mental health service for LGBTQ+ people.

Specifically, we want your LGBTQ+ stories, your stories of love, grace and compassion (and most importantly your creative swearing). Here’s the lowdown in a handy bullet list – click here for the full rules, FAQs and entry form:

SUBMIT YOUR STORIES HERE!

LGBTQ+ flash competition

12 Writing Tips To Get You Started

As Anne Frank poignantly wrote: “I can shake off everything as I write; my sorrows disappear, my courage is reborn.” Writing can be an incredible outlet, but sometimes there are stumbling blocks along the way.

Which is why the team at READ Foundation has put together a list of 12 Writing Tips to Get You Started.

Children writing in a classroom

READ is an education charity which builds schools and enables children from poverty-stricken backgrounds to access schooling. We’re currently running a writing competition for short stories, poems and personal essays which will inspire children in their educational path. Scroll down for more details on how to enter.

The charity has gathered the best tips from well-known writers, blogs and the wider web to help writers in their pursuit of the perfect prose.

  1. Write from the heart. A book without a pulse is like a person without a spirit. – Linda F Rad
  2. We love the tips in this Guardian article on the Top 10 Writers’ Tips on Writing. Particularly this one from Katherine Mansfield: “Looking back I imagine I was always writing. Twaddle it was too. But better far write twaddle or anything, anything, than nothing at all.”
  3. Enter competitions, send off examples to agents, read up on literacy festivals to attend, join writing clubs either locally or online – research as many places as you can which can help you on your writing journey, whether the aim is to get published, receive feedback, or simply learn more about the writing process from the people who do it professionally.
  4. Write on a computer which is disconnected from the internet (after you’ve finished reading this blog, obviously). It’s a distraction you can do without.
  5. The “show don’t tell” mentality is well-known for a good reason: it’s true. As fiction author Anton Chekhov puts it: “Don’t tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass.”
  6. Oxford Dictionaries has some excellent general advice on better writing, whether it’s a letter, speech, email or something more creative. We like the tip “guide readers through what you write”. The advice is to “help readers understand your message quickly and precisely. To do this, it is necessary to show them clearly how the different parts relate to each other.”
  7. How about a writing tip from a Nobel winning author? Alice Munro, who was given the Nobel for Literature in 2013, has spent most of her writing life focussing on short stories. She said: “Usually I have a lot of acquaintance with the story before I start writing it….stories would just be working in my head for so long that when I started to write I was deep into them.”
  8. Proofread proofread proofread. It’s relly obviously when a sentennce has speling errors in it. If you’re entering a writing competition, judges may penalise you for the errors and it could mean the difference between winning or losing a contest.
  9. Write, even when you don’t feel like it. Get into the habit of writing on a regular basis. If you can commit to writing for a certain amount of time each day, for 30 days, it’ll soon become second nature. About 30-40 days is all you need to make a new habit stick.
  10. Recognise it’s not just your characters that are human – you are too! So if you have periods of struggle, you’re not alone. Don’t be too hard on yourself.
  11. Don’t wait for the perfect moment. Julie Duffy, founder of Story a Day, says “Don’t wait to write until you’re older/wiser/invited to the party. Don’t wait until you have something ‘important’ to say.” Other experts have revealed their best writing tips for beginners.
  12. Enjoy the process! It’s a journey you’ll be proud you’ve taken. Good luck!

While you’re here, we have some exciting news for you. Education charity READ Foundation is running its very first writing competition and needs people like YOU to take part. Read all about it here. The deadline for entries is Wednesday, 10thOctober 2018.

Thieves and New Contest Themes

new themes 2 copyOur next contest deadline is July the 28th, and we also have new monthly themes for other A3 Review contests till November. We’re looking for short fiction, mini essays, poetry and artwork on the theme of Ears, Hats and Triangles, for example.

Visit our Submittable page for all the details.

The next theme is Thieves. Hearts, heists, identities, or apricots from a neighbour’s tree. We like work that feels immediate and edgy, so check out the prompts and start creating now! We welcome submissions from around the world.

Three winners per issue receive cash prizes, and all monthly winners receive contributor copies, back issues and Writing Maps. All the details are here.

You can read some of the work that we feature in The A3 Review on our Instagram page.

Any questions, please do write to us at a3 [at] writingmaps.com

To the Moon and Back

The A3 Review is looking for entries to their May contest. This month, they’re inviting stories, poems and artwork on the theme of The Moon. Mystery, cheesy, bloody, science-fictiony, or with cows jumping over it… they welcome all moon-inpired stories.

Stories about werewolves, high tide and low tide, moonlit sonatas, stories based on myths and folklore. Stories about dancing to the light of the moon. What happens to you on nights when the moon is full? Write about that!

For more lunar inspiration, and to enter The A3 Review‘s May contest, check out our Submittable page.

As always, the word limit is 150 words, and all artwork needs to fit into an A6 panel.

Mooning anecdotes most welcome!

Visit them at TheA3Review.com.

 

Going Round in Circles?

circlesIf you’re going round in circles, we want to hear about it. This month’s theme is the title theme for our next issue, Issue 9, The Circles Issue.

The A3 Review is looking for stories, poems and artwork about circles of trust and circular logic, running circles around someone and being in or outside the circle. We’d love stories and concrete poems in the shape of a circle or a spiral. See our Submittable page for all the details and more inspiration.

Each month’s 2 winners are published in The A3 Review, receive gifts from Writing Maps, and are in the running to win cash prizes. All the details are here.

Our current issue, Issue 8, is at the printers, and should be on its way out into the world by the end of April. Pre-order a copy here.