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This week on Writers Abroad, 27th April 2015
Category: Site News

The week off to a terrifying start in Dhaka as we felt the Nepal earthquake, and had to evacuate buildings for two days in a row. Hopefully the worst is over and our thoughts are with friends and colleagues in Nepal. Events like this are sad and terrifying but also eye- and heart-opening, and as writers and poets we should be ready to feel and write it down, and perhaps give comfort and understanding through our words.

On Writers Abroad the Call for Submissions is the biggest event, and discussed in forums and skype meetings. Paola has had an interview on the anthology published in Expatclic, which will definately lead to lots of submissions, and other members are mobilising through their various networks. A rememinder that the E magazine will also be published in September so members need to start thinking about that as well as Light inspired stories and poems for the Anthology.†

A quiet week on the Bragging stool which Alyson has all to herself with her first story accepted by "Take a break'. Well done Alyson and no doubt more will follow.†

Monday Muses from Jill are up bright and early and ready to inspire with two opening sentences and a couple of photos, all with a possible conection to the light theme of the Anthology.

Have a lovely week and stay safe!


Wellies or Flip-flops?
Category: Writing
Tags: Literary festival Hay Festival York Festival of writing elevator pitch

Yes, the festival season is upon us. Iím not usually one for muddy fields, improvised toilets and lots of hubbub but this year I have booked two literary festivals! Firstly, the legendary Hay Festival†in the Welsh Marches. Growing up in the Wye Valley, I remember Hay-on-Wye as a grim market town on the verge of dereliction. In 1893 my grandparents' marriage was registered in Hay so family connections in the border area run deep. But to me it was always a sad place where out-of-fashion Welsh Mountain ponies were auctioned for a knock-down price to the meat man.

But then in the 1970s entrepreneurial hippy (Oxymoron?)†Richard Booth†declared himself the King of Hay, and Hay an independent Kingdom of Books! Suddenly Hay became a destination. Hats off to the self-appointed King, he kept out corporate investors and big retail chains ensuring the town comprised independent traders that serve a lively community where sheep farmers rub shoulders with Y-generation idealists. And the cherry on the cake, the annual descent of the world's literati each spring. My line up for Hay Festival includes; Michael Morpurgo, Meera Syal, Helen MacDonald, Marcus Brigstock and an African and Welsh harp concert.

Then, in the autumn, and Iím already quaking in my flip-flops, Iíve enrolled for the†York Festival of Writing.†A mind-exploding selection of workshops awaits me AND two ten-minute slots with agents where I can pitch works in progress. But which WIP to choose of my six Nano projects? Or a totally new idea altogether? My business English students have to prepare an elevator pitch for their homework and Iíve decided I need to join them. I found this short session by Michael Hyatt especially useful for writers.

So whatís on your festival agenda this year? Will you be donning silly footwear or slip on your old faithfuls and stay home?

This Week on Writers Abroad, 20th April 2015
Category: Site News
Tags: Writers Abroad writing ex-pat writers anthology

The weather here changed dramatically from warm sunshine on Saturday to rain on Sunday. It's probably just as well that it wasnít fine all weekend, since I was attending an excellent writing workshop led by novelist Amanda Hodgkinson with our local writing group. It was concentrated but fun. Amanda also wrote the foreword to our last anthology, Foreign and Far Away.

Dianne has posted this weekís blog. A thoughtful piece about plotting and how she approaches it, given that she has restricted writing time. Some very useful tips, too.

The Monday Muses this week are courtesy of Alyson, with a great selection of prompts, most of them aimed at getting us started on our anthology 2015's theme of light.

The April Challenge is well underway. Jo has a 750-word story, Alyson has a fiction and a non-fiction piece and Glyn has got off the blocks with a poem for Kaleidoscope. Please give them the benefit of your critiques.

The Bragging Stool has filled up this week.

  • Glyn/John is in demand for poetry readings at literary festivals. His publisher Mosaique Press also wants to publish another chapbook of his poems.
  • Angelaís story ĎThe Cimmerian Clubí was performed live in Leeds by Liarsí League.
  • Rilla had an article in Danish about anti-immigration tendencies in Denmark published in an online newspaper.
  • One of Alysonís flash fiction stories was shortlisted in this monthís Writing Magazine.
  • And Jill has had two stories accepted by Alfie Dog Fiction website.

Congratulations to all Ė nice to see so much activity.

The Call for Submissions for our next anthology, Kaleidoscope, has been finalised. So please spread it around to ex-pat writers of your acquaintance wherever you can. Youíll find the final version on DropBox in the Anthology 2015 folder. But please remember NOT to cut and paste it, simply to copy the file to your own computer.

Glyn is also marshalling the reading groups in advance for the anthology submissions. If you are keen to be on the poetry group, please let him know (and also tell him if you want to do fiction, too). Otherwise, assume you will be on one of the fiction groups.

The next formal chat is on Sunday 26th April 11 am CET with Doreen in the chair. Apologies to Doreen/Jo please. I canít make it this time, unfortunately.

Thatís it. Let me know if Iíve missed anything. Have a good writing week.

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