Tag Archives: youwriteon

‘the tracks…’ = bestseller

1 Feb

‘the tracks…’ has made it onto youwriteon.com’s bestsellers chart

a few months back i posted the opening chapters to my novel, the tracks… here. i then revised chapters, following some very helpful feedback, and re-posted them here, as well as on youwriteon.com. if you haven’t read the revised chapters yet, you really should, especially considering everything i’ve done for you.

i’ve mentioned youwriteon before on this blog – your work is reviewed and rated by fellow aspiring writers, and highly-rated extracts make it onto their charts. so i’m pleased to say, after riding high in their ‘top ten’ for a while, i’ve now made it to no.2 on their ‘bestsellers chart’, which – as we know – is even better than no.1*.

so, what does this mean for me?

well, it means i’ll receive a professional critique from one of the editors at orion or random house, which is very nice indeed.

plus being a ‘bestseller’ feeds my monstrous ego and allows me to walk around shouting “who’s laughing now, haters?”**

but, more than anything, it reminds me that i’ve got a bloody novel to write and really should start focusing on the next chapters.

so i will. i’m off to write.


*if you think odd numbers are bastards.

** i’ve never done this in my life.


arvon. and on…

5 Jan

a terrible pun, i know. blame lack of sleep.

was i up late last night being a total rock god? no, of course not. i was putting the finishing touches to my application for the 2011 jerwood / arvon mentoring scheme. i’d invite you to apply too but, unless you have the time to read the rules, write a 1,000 word statement and biography and hand-deliver your application to the free word centre in farringdon by 5pm tomorrow…you’re too late. sorry about that. for what it’s worth, i left everything to the last minute, and only just posted mine off in time. i probably missed something important out. like my contact details.

it’s a great oparvon foundation course toolsportunity – three fiction writers, three playwrights and three poets chosen from applicants will receive guidance and support over the next year from established writers, plus the prize includes two separate weeks at arvon foundation courses, where work-in-progress can be developed.

the reason i’m mentioning the scheme here is that, when writing my application statement, i found myself thinking fondly of the week i spent on an arvon foundation course last summer. there are four different locations around the country where courses take place, and mine was at john osbourne’s old home, the hurst.

i’ll keep it brief and say: it was one of the best experiences i’ve had as a writer. tutorials in the morning, free time to write in the afternoon, and group fun in the evening. beautiful surroundings. great tutors. loads of fun. you even cook for each other – which is more fun than it sounds.

most courses are attended by about fifteen writers, and i’m pleased to say that for five days i was surrounded by about as nice a group as you could wish to meet. a really diverse bunch of friendly and talented characters, including melanie, vinnie and jane, whose wonderful words you should, of course, sample.

most importantly, the course gave me the space – both mentally and physically – to actually write. having the free time to concentrate on what you love doing, whilst knowing that you are supposed to be doing that and nothing else, felt…unusual. and awesome. i wrote a lot of words. a few of them were actually alright.

arvon haven’t announced their 2011 courses yet, but will soon. sign up and they’ll let you know once they’re open for bookings.

get to the point? fine:

if you’re a writer, and you’re reading this, and you acknowledge that your writing can and should improve, and you haven’t done an arvon course…then do one. you won’t regret it.

(disclaimer: you might regret it. but i doubt you will. and if you do, don’t come crying to me. arvon don’t pay me for this, you know. i just like them and think they’re great. oh, just BOOK A COURSE, will you?).

oh, and if you’re interested, i submitted a story called ‘i think the sun is shining’ with my application. i’ll put it on this site sometime soon, but in the meantime i’d be eternally grateful if you’d do me the honour of reading it here.


%d bloggers like this: