Free Writers’ Resources

This week, we bring you news of some free resources available to writers at the moment. Firstly a virtual conference available to writers everywhere. And secondly an opportunity specifically for writers in the south west of England.

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Elizabeth on the Radio

This week CWC member, Elizabeth Ducie, tells us about a great opportunity available via the BBC and how she used it to her advantage.

Elizabeth Ducie

Back in April, fellow CWC member, Maureen Boon, told us about her experience in recording readings from her books for broadcast on BBC Radio Devon. At the time, I thought that sounds like fun; maybe I’ll have a go. But other things got in the way, and it kept slipping down my ToDo list.

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Novel by Accident

This week, CWC member Jackie Juno tells us all about how she has begun writing a novel by accident.

“I always said I could never write a novel. I mean, all those words! All that planning, figuring out the plot, going in depth into everything, setting aside a million months to do it… no. I will stick to poems and short stories, a bit of flash fiction. Much easier to cope with. Not too epic. Never had the staying power. Always been impatient. Happy to start projects, oh yes, tons of them. But finish them off? See them through? Occasionally. If they’re not too daunting.

But this novel snuck up on me. Crept up when I wasn’t looking and pounced. But how, you may ask?

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Research To Stimulate Creativity 2

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Suzanne McConaghy

This week, in the second of a two-part article, CWC Treasurer, Suzanne McConaghy continues to tell us about the research she’s being carrying out in preparation for writing her next novel set in a different time period and a new location.

“In this follow-up article, I want to talk in more depth about how research can influence what you write’ beyond simply providing a setting. And if I remember correctly, this links in to something a speaker said a couple of meetings ago. Continue reading

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Research to Stimulate Creativity 1

Suzanne-McConaghy 2

Suzanne McConaghy

This week, in the first of a two-part article, CWC Treasurer, Suzanne McConaghy introduces us to the research she’s being carrying out in preparation for writing her next novel set in a different time period and a new location.

“I noticed a couple of weeks ago, Elizabeth Ducie was advocating we try something new to stimulate creativity: Stepping Outside My Comfort Zone. Inadvertently, I seem to have done exactly this. Continue reading

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South West Together

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Maureen Boon

This week, CWC member Maureen Boon brings us another example of how the writerly community is adjusting to the curious times we are living through.

“Through my membership of the National Association of Writers in Education, I received an invitation to a recent South West NAWE networking event. It was hosted by Paper Nations and attended via Crowdcast, a platform which I had not used before. Continue reading

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Stepping Outside My Comfort Zone

Elizabeth Ducie

This week CWC member, Elizabeth Ducie, talks about some of the things she’s been doing recently to refresh her writing.

“At a Swanwick seminar years ago, we were challenged to step outside our comfort zone occasionally, to see what we could achieve. At the time, it influenced me to take a business decision I would otherwise have avoided. It resulted in the single largest contract our small consultancy ever won; months of work for us and several of our contractors; and allowed us to finance a move across the country which we have never regretted. Continue reading

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Lockdown Recipe For Success

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Maureen Boon

This week, CWC member Maureen Boon tells us about the effect of lockdown on her writing life and how she’s used the time to take a different direction.

“Shortly before the lockdown, I visited four local schools around World Book Day. Using my two children’s books, Ant’s Awesome Adventure and Bearly Believable, I carried out storytelling and writing workshops with children from reception to Year 6. It was a very encouraging experience with good feedback from the children. I finished a Bearly Believable Colouring Book with local artist Deirdre Stewart, who I had met during the Joint Arts Project. Next I ordered copies of all my books, for a publicity campaign going round the holiday venues, to ask them to market my books. Continue reading

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Must Characters Change?

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Margaret Barnes

This week, CWC member, Margaret Barnes, uses the main character from her series of legal thrillers to test the theory that a character must change over the course of a novel.

“Most literary agents and editors tell writers their protagonist must change over the course of the story. I have asked myself whether that is a valid assumption to make. Does a character have to go on some kind of personal journey which alters them? Continue reading

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How’s It Been For You So Far?

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Jean Grimsey

This week, CWC member Jean Grimsey reflects on the strange situation we’re in at the moment, and how it’s affected her writing.

“Author? That’s a misnomer for a start – I am writing this under false pretences as I don’t think I can claim to be an author at the moment. Lockdown has put paid to that. Words do not flow, with a few exceptions. Continue reading

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