With the national team performing their usual rousing routine of losing horribly and destroying the slender hopes of the three fans who thought they might have a chance of glory, why not take your mind off the footy and settle down with a nice mix of news? There’s a little something for everyone this week…
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I’ll start with a blog update from Stella Duffy, who has been reflecting on her 20 years of being a published author and offering her thanks to those who have supported her along the way:
Interaction with readers has been one of the greatest unexpected gifts of my writing work. I didn’t realise this interaction would happen, and back when I was first published it happened very differently – without twitter, without facebook, without amazon, goodreads, blogs …
To read the rest of the piece, and feast your eyes upon a vintage Calendar Girl cover, click here.
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Now, I know that Christmas stockings, tinsel, carols, and festive shenanigans seem like a long way away when you’re currently debating which bikini to pack for your summer holiday, but Ylva are already decking the halls in preparation for a Christmas anthology:
We are looking for lesbian fiction. At least one of the main characters must be a lesbian. If the story is erotica, it must be F/F. All submissions should have Christmas or Hanukkah as the main theme. The stories can be romantic, humorous, or erotic.
If you fancy trying your hand at writing a short story (4000-8000 words) for the collection, head to this link for all the necessary details. All the proceeds from the anthology will be donated to the Albert Kennedy Trust in the UK and the Ali Forney Center in New York City. Both organisations provide housing for homeless LGBT youth.
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Sticking with the authorly theme, if you are heading to the lesbian weekend extravaganza that is L Fest, more details have been posted about the writing workshops with VG Lee:
Workshop 1: A leap of faith: Let’s get emotional! To create believable characters and a credible narrative we have to know how people really feel and react…
Workshop 2: Fast & furious: Perfection in a few hundred words or less. We will work towards writing a piece of flash fiction…
Hit the above link to read more about each of the sessions. Both workshops are included in the price of the admission, so they really are too good an opportunity to pass up.
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There’s a veritable embarrassment of riches for lovers of lesbians and lesfic authors at the Edinburgh International Book Festival this year.
Set in a specially created tented village in Charlotte Square Gardens in the heart of Edinburgh, the Edinburgh International Book Festival offers something for just about every age and every interest, bringing readers and writers together for inspiration, entertainment and discussion.
The festival runs from 9-25th August, and the schedule has just been made public. Feast your eyes on this little lot (with love to the missus for copying them all down out of the paper for me!)
Carol Ann Duffy (Poet Laureate): 9th August, 18.30
Jackie Kay (author of Reality Reality & Trumpet): 12th August, 18.30
Ali Smith (author of Girl Meets Boy): 15th August, 10.30 & 24th August, 20.30
Val McDermid (author of the Lindsay Gordon series & many more!): 20th August, 17.00
Sarah Waters (author of Tipping the Velvet, Fingersmith, and the upcoming The Paying Guests): 25th August, 20.00
Tickets for each event are around £10. For more details and ticket availability/booking, the official site for the festival is here.
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I was just tooting around looking for new release info, when I happened upon the cover for Rebecca Buck‘s forthcoming collection of short stories, A Queer Kind of Justice: Prison Tales Across Time. The collection is slated for a September e-book release from Bold Strokes in the category of Historical Fiction. Given Rebecca’s love of all things historical and her recent experience guiding people around the Galleries of Justice museum in Nottingham (“On any given day you might find me dressed as a Victorian warder, a drunken Georgian prisoner, or conducting a mock trial with a group of children!”), she’s probably the perfect person to get her teeth into the subject. There’s no blurb on the BSB site yet, but as soon as one appears, we’ll let you have it!
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Another author with a new release pending is Jade Winters, whose novel Faking It is scheduled for publication on June 29th. Jade has just updated her blog with a new post about Diabolical Dialogue:
Conversation is an exchange of information – it’s not dialogue… My book was full of conversation. The way I had written my characters’ dialogue was so out of sync with how people spoke in real life. Why did I fall into this trap? Because I wanted to get the message across in a clear and precise manner (whilst boring the pants off the reader). I was scared to have my characters swear, say something rude, you know, all those things that comes naturally to some people.
Hit the link to read the full piece. Faking It is – as yet – blurb-less, but for now you can feast your eyes on its shiny new cover.
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Free Stuff! Ha! Thought that’d get your attention. There are 5 copies of Nicola Griffith‘s Hild currently up for grabs over at goodreads. The giveaway ends July 8th and is open to residents of Great Britain only. All you need to do is hop over to the link and add your name to the hat. Good luck.
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Jody Klaire has a new blog post over at Women and Words, where she chats about her début novel The Empath and the challenge of finding a unique voice for her characters:
Well, my writing is a little different, as are my characters. When you meet Aeron Lorelei, my protagonist in The Empath, you will see from the very first page that she is unique. Her voice, her speech, her thoughts and feelings are hers alone. I never intended to create characters who were so very… well… different but I hope one thing that resonates is that when you pick up one of my books, it’s unmistakably mine.
Apologies for not quite hitting the giveaway deadline with this one, but it fell between two news posts!
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Right, three night shifts and a bunch of rowdy, drunken, and inconsolable footy fans await. I sincerely hope that your weekend turns out to be better than mine…