10 qualities of successful authors

      1. WritingdownthebonesAmbition – Many of the best writers choose not to publish.
      2. Technical skills – this goes way beyond the basics of punctuation and grammar. Good basics equip a writer for report writing, not authorship.
      3. An eye for detail – writers look beyond the superficial.
      4. Their stories illuminate what isn’t spoken about. [Tweet this!]

      5. Creativity – making is craft. Making something out of nothing is creating. The first story in a successful series is creation, the stories that go with it are examples of craft driven by that first creative pulse.
      6. Tenacity – for the blue days, to get you through the days when creativity has flown, the grammar checker makes more sense than you do, and the people in your house want you back in their lives.
      7. Legal knowledge – enough to know the difference between libel and defamation, to realise that the law doesn’t give a fig about what a writer wants (relative to everybody else’s needs). And enough knowledge to understand what it is the law thinks the people need, just so you know which mark is their line in the sand.
      8. Networking skills – a writer cannot easily do it alone. Pick a network that suits you – offline and online – and make friends.
      9. Digital skills – technology is becoming simpler and simpler. A free iPad app can create a movie trailer using camera stills.
      10. Professional skills – authors have a career to grow and to manage. If you don’t have professional skills, they can be learned. Your creativity makes it an easy task.
      11. Marketing skills – see above. Authors are in charge of growing their career.

Karen Foxlee Workshop, 19 October

As part of the 2013 CRUSH festival, the Brisbane Writers Festival’s Write Across Queensland program would like to invite any interested writers to the following workshop:

 “Darkness and Light” – Writing YA with author Karen Foxlee

 Ever wanted to write for young adults?  This 3 hour workshop will show you how to develop compelling and complex teen characters, how to find a voice for them and how to keep your readers hooked through plot and structure.

After a brief overview of what Young Adult Fiction is, workshop attendees will get practical and hands-on, focussing on the following three important components of writing YA.

1.    Creating believable and compelling young adult characters:  Character basics / what matters to your character / embracing your inner teen / using emotion in your writing (writing activity)

2.    Finding your voice:  Matters of POV/ voice /dialogue (writing activity)

3.    Keeping  them keen: Conflict, plotting and structure.  How to keep your story/novel moving and how to ensure your YA reader stays with you.  (writing activity)

This 3 hour workshop explores some basics of writing for Young Adults

Expected Learning Outcomes:

The workshop attendee will gain a basic knowledge of YA fiction and the YA fiction market, as well as practical writing tools for character development, finding a voice and story structuring.

Karen Foxlee is the author of The Anatomy of Wings (UQP 2007) and The Midnight Dress (UQP 2013). The Anatomy of Wings won the Queensland Premiers Literary Award for Emerging Queensland author in 2006, the Commonwealth Writers Prize Best First Book 2008 (South Asia/Pacific) and the Dobbie Award 2008. Both novels are published internationally. Her first children’s book, Ophelia and the Marvellous Boy, is set to be published in the US/UK in 2014. Karen lives and writes in Gympie, Queensland.

The workshop will be held in the ground floor, front room of the U3A building, on Saturday 19 October at 10.30am from 2.00pm. as part of the Bundaberg Writers’ Club monthly meeting activities. This is a free event, morning tea will be provided but please bring your own lunch.

Karen Foxlee

Karen Foxlee

Hustling Hinkler

Dr Darryl Dymock shares his story of publication in a blog on the Queensland Writers Centre website.

One of his milestones was attending WriteFest and scoring an interview with senior agent, Sophie Hamley, based on his 30 page submission. Her advice and guidance led Darryl on the path to re-write his young adult novel into the non-fiction narrative Hustling Hinkler: the short tumultuous life of a trail-blazing Australian aviator.

Hustling Hinkler will be published by Hachette Australia on 30 July, and will be launched at River Bend Books in Brisbane on 9 August.

Darryl has been invited to talk about Hustling Hinkler at the Bundaberg Library at 11am on Saturday, 24 August.

Congratulations to Darryl from all at the Bundaberg Writers’ Club and the WriteFest committee. It’s inspiring to learn that a prior WriteFest attendee has gone on to attain publication.

Check out Hustling Hinkler on the Hachette Australia website.


Short Story Competition Winners Announced

Our thanks to the writers all over Australia who took part in Bundaberg Writer’s 2012 short story competition.

The competition was judged by Meg Vann, author and researcher, creative writing tutor and Australian Writers’ Marketplace co-ordinator.

And the winning story’s are:

  1.  Charlie’s Horse –  Michelle Lopert (NSW)This disturbing and evocative story explores themes of power and belonging to great effect. The author establishes strong narrative interest from the first scene, and builds suspense through the unveiling of secrets and fears in a gripping context, all the way through to the satisfying and original climax.
  2. From the Island – Chris Cooper (NSW) An extremely moving story about illness and hope. The author evokes a strong emotional connection with the central character through the layering of engaging scenes from both the past and present. The ending moved me to tears.

Also worthy of note are Love is a Bitch, by Michelle Lopert (HC) and Of Mice and Milk Bottles by Deborah Galna (C)

Workshop with Marianne de Pierres

It’s been confirmed – Marianne de Pierres is on board to present two workshops at next years WriteFest. We’re excited, we know you’re excited, so keep Saturday 19th May 2012 free for WriteFest.

Stranger in a Strange World – Writing Sci Fi and Fantasy

Award-wining SF author Marianne de Pierres has been described by reviewers as “an utterly convincing world-builder” whose “descriptions are lush and evocative but never bogged down in superfluous detail.” In this workshop Marianne shares her keys to creating convincing, compact world-building. Learn how to cut the waffle.

Nothing Sweet About Me – Writing Crime

Davitt award winning author Marianne Delacourt shares her insights on writing humorous crime set in Australia. Plotting backwards, making your setting one of your characters, creating a likeable protagonist and knowing when to shed blood are just some of the things covered in this lively, fun workshop.

Marianne de Pierres

Marianne de Pierres is an award-winning author who publishes novels in the science fiction, fantasy, crime and young adult genres. Her stories have been translated into other languages, adapted into a role playing game and an animation. Visit her websites at http://www.mariannedepierres.com, http://www.tarasharp.com and http://www.burnbright.com